Osteopathic Medicine and Hearing Loss
By High Desert Family Medicine
June 17, 2021
Category: Osteopathic Medicine
Tags: Hearing Loss
When you think about preventing or treating hearing loss you probably don’t immediately think about turning to an osteopath but maybe you should. After all, some forms of hearing loss can be avoided if you incorporate healthy habits and promote a safe environment that nurtures your hearing. Many osteopathic physicians are beginning to see even mild hearing loss in kids and teens and a lot has to do with blasting music for hours on end through their headphones. By determining these habits, an osteopath can map out effective solutions that can keep you and your family maintaining healthy hearing.
Are Your Headphones Too Loud?
The answer is “probably”. If you can’t hear someone talking to you or don’t know what’s going on around you when you put on your headphones, then this is a telltale sign that your headphones are too loud and you need to turn the volume down.
Kids that spend a lot of time using headphones may develop mild hearing loss, which in turn can delay speech and language. This is why it’s incredibly important for parents to monitor the number of time kids spend wearing headphones and to make sure they are listening to them at safe volumes.
Is it Possible to Prevent Hearing Loss?
Here are some simple strategies that you and the family can start implementing to preserve your hearing and protect against hearing loss,
- When listening to headphones the sound should be no louder than 60 percent of the maximum volume. Limit headphone use to one hour a day.
- If you decide to listen to your headphones for more than one hour, make sure to decrease the volume even further.
- If you absolutely have to blast the music (but why would you?), the maximum amount of time to listen is five minutes for the day.
- Instead of turning to earbuds, which may feel more comfortable, using larger headphones that sit over the ears are often better for your hearing.
Unfortunately, hearing loss is often gradual so you may be doing damage every day but not even realize it until it’s too late. Taking these steps now can reduce your risk for noise-related hearing loss. If you are concerned about your hearing, you may also want to talk with an osteopath about other tips and strategies for protecting your hearing.
Prevention is key, particularly when it comes to hearing loss. While we may not be able to stop age-related hearing loss there are strategies that we can help you put in place right now to protect your hearing for the future.