It’s likely that you’ve already detected that you don’t hear as well as you once did. Normally, we don’t even realize that our decisions are negatively impacting our hearing.
Many types of hearing loss are preventable with a few basic lifestyle changes. Let’s look at six surprising secrets that will help you protect your hearing.
1. Manage Your Blood Pressure
Persistently high blood pressure is not good. A study found that people with above-average blood pressure are 52% more likely to have hearing loss, not to mention other health problems.
Take steps to reduce your blood pressure and avoid hearing damage. See a doctor right away and never ignore your high blood pressure. Management of blood pressure includes correct diet, exercise, stress management, and following your doctor’s advice.
2. Stop Smoking
Here’s one more reason to quit: Smokers are 15% more likely to suffer from hearing loss. Even more alarming: People who are regularly subjected to second-hand smoke are 28% more likely to have hearing issues. Even if you go away from the room, smoke hangs around for long periods of time with harmful consequences.
Think about safeguarding your hearing, if you smoke, by quitting. Take steps to reduce your exposure to second-hand smoke if you hang out around a smoker.
3. Keep Your Diabetes Under Control
Diabetes or pre-diabetes affects one in four adults. Unless they make some serious lifestyle changes, somebody who is pre-diabetic will very likely get diabetes within 5 years.
Blood vessels that are injured by high blood sugar don’t efficiently carry nutrients. A diabetic person is more than twice as likely to cope with hearing loss compared to a non-diabetic person.
If you suffer from diabetes, safeguard your hearing by taking the proper steps to control it. If you are at risk of developing type 2 diabetes, safeguard your hearing by making lifestyle changes to prevent it.
4. Lose Some Weight
This is more about your health than feeling great about your body image. As your Body Mass Index (BMI) goes up, so does your risk of hearing loss and other health disorders. A mildly obese woman (with a 30 to 34 BMI) has a 17% increased risk of developing hearing loss. A moderately obese person has a 25% chance of hearing loss if they have a BMI of 40.
Work to get rid of some of that extra weight. Your life can be prolonged and your hearing can be protected by something as simple as walking for 30 minutes every day.
5. OTC Drugs Shouldn’t be Overused
Some over-the-counter (OTC) medications can result in hearing impairment. The risk increases when these medicines are taken on a regular basis over lengthy periods of time.
Typical over-the-counter medications that affect hearing include aspirin, NSAIDs (like naproxen, ibuprofen), and acetaminophen. Take these drugs in moderation and only with your doctor’s advice if you need to take them more frequently.
Studies reveal that you’ll most likely be fine if you’re taking these medications periodically in the recommended doses. Using them on a daily basis, however, raises the chance of hearing loss by as much as 40% for men.
Your doctor’s advice should always be implemented. But if you’re taking these medications every day to manage chronic pain or thin your blood, consult your doctor about lifestyle changes you can make to reduce your dependence on OTC drugs.
6. Eat More Broccoli
Broccoli is packed with nutrients and vitamins like C and K and also is high in iron. Iron is integral to a healthy heart and strong blood circulation. Oxygen and nutrients are transported to your cells which helps keep them nourished and healthy and iron is a major part of this process.
For vegetarians or people who don’t eat much meat, eating a sufficient amount of plant-based iron is important. The iron found in plants is not as bioavailable as the iron in meat so people in this group are more likely to be deficient in iron.
More than 300,000 individuals were examined by Pennsylvania State University. Individuals who have anemia (severe iron deficiency) are two times as likely, according to this research, to develop sensorineural hearing loss than people who have typical iron concentrations. Sensorineural hearing loss is the scientific name for irreversible hearing loss related to the aging process.
Sound is received and transmitted to the brain by tiny little hairs in the inner ear which resonate with the frequency and volume of that sound. If an iron deficiency or poor circulation causes these delicate hairs to die they will never grow back.
You’re never too young to get your hearing examined, so don’t wait until it’s too late. Implement these steps into your life and reduce hearing loss.