The safety of our ears is essential to preserve our sense of hearing and our sense of balance. Sounds allow vivid interaction with the people around us and our environment. For instance, we wake up first thing in the morning by the sound of the alarm; we converse with the people around us with sound; and we enjoy music by our ability to hear its sound. In order to protect the ability of hearing that we are blessed with, we must take good care of our ears as following:
1. Carefully Clean Your Ears
If an object is smaller than your elbow, do not let it into your ears. This applies to bobby pins and Q-tips as they may injure the eardrum or ear canal. Clean your ears by wiping their exterior with a tissue or a clean washcloth. If you wear earrings, clean them and clean the earlobes with rubbing alcohol regularly.
2. Treat Respiratory Infections
Upper respiratory infections that affect the nose, throat and ears must be treated quickly in order not to cause serious ear infections.
3. Avoid Noises
Exposure to load noises makes a serious threat to an individual’s hearing ability. Reduce the volume of your sound systems at home, at the office and in the car to a reasonable level that is not considered load by anyone. If you are using headphones, the people around you shouldn’t be able to hear what you are listening to. You also need to wear ear-protecting headgear when you are working with something that you can’t reduce its volume like a lawnmower, a power tool or a leaf blower.
4. Protect Your Ears against Changing Pressure
You need to know the right underwater techniques to deal with pressure changes inside your ears before scuba diving to avoid the risks of ear damage. Moreover, when traveling with an airplane, swallow and yawn several times while the plane is taking off and while is landing. You can also get special earplugs that have filters that balance air pressure in ears during the flight. If you suffer from a sinus infection, prepare a decongestant with you to take before the plane descends.
5. Cover Your Ears When Necessary
Apart from getting hurt by load noises and pressure changes, there are other ways your ears can get hurt. When you apply sunscreen on your face, remember to include your ears to protect it from harmful UV rays. Remember also to wear a helmet when engaging in any activity that puts a threat for ear injuries such as skiing, biking and using roller blades.
6. Look Out for What Comes Out of Your Ears
Ears clean their interior by producing earwax, so don’t worry about it. However, if the wax builds up inside your ear affecting your hearing; see a doctor to clean it for you. You would also need to see a doctor if there is drainage as it is usually a sign of infection.
7. Get Familiar with the Signs of Hearing Loss
In case you find it hard to keep up with conversations whether face to face or on the telephone, this might be the beginning of hearing loss if it accompanied these signs:
– Asking people to repeat themselves several times to understand them.
– Raising the volume of the television or other sound system to levels that annoy others.
– Answering inappropriately due to misunderstanding.
If you suffer from the above signs or there are issues that annoy you about your ear such as itching or pain, don’t hesitate to see a specialist to lead you to the proper steps to save your ears and your hearing.