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5 Steps Seniors Can Take to Prevent Hearing Loss

By Lauren Robison, 9:00 am on

The Hearing Loss Association of America claims that around 30 percent of adults over the age of 65 have at least some hearing loss. While most types of hearing loss can’t be reversed, quite a few steps can be taken to prevent further damage. These five tips are perfect for seniors who want to preserve this vital sense for years to come. 

1. Avoid Harmful Noises

Moderate hearing loss is a growing health concern, and one of the reasons for this is because people are constantly exposed to damaging noises. In addition to living in a noisy environment, many people also use headphones throughout the day or keep the television at a high volume. As a general rule, smartphones, MP3 players, and other listening devices should have their volume set to around 50 percent when using earbuds or any other headphones. Those same settings should also be used for wireless television headphones. 

If your loved one is living with hearing loss that is impacting his or her ability to carry out daily tasks safely, consider hiring a caregiver. New Hampshire home care experts are available to provide high-quality care to seniors on an as-needed basis. From assistance with mobility and exercise to providing transportation to the doctor’s office and social events, there are a variety of ways professional caregivers can help your aging loved one continue to live independently.

2. Beware of Medical Conditions

Almost anything that affects the brain or circulatory system can have an impact on hearing. This includes high blood pressure, high blood sugar, diabetes, and heart disease. Seniors who are relatively healthy should visit a doctor at least twice a year to be tested for common age-related ailments. They should also schedule an immediate appointment with their doctor if they notice any issues with their hearing. 

Arrange for a professional caregiver to provide transportation to and from medical appointments because maintenance of your loved one’s hearing is critical for preventing future hearing loss. When searching for reliable New Hampshire home care agencies, families want to know their senior loved one will be well taken care of. At Home Care Assistance, our expertly trained caregivers are available around the clock to assist with tasks around the house, provide transportation to medical appointments and social events, and much more.

3. Create Proper Hygiene Habits

Even if your loved one is cleaning his or her ears every day, he or she might be doing more harm than good. Removing earwax is an important task, but it should never be done with a cotton swab or any other object around the home. Older adults who are experiencing hearing loss because of earwax need to have their ears professionally cleaned once every few weeks. Putting foreign objects in the ears can increase the risk of permanent damage to the eardrums. 

4. Use Decongestants When Necessary

Pressure felt in the ears and sinuses can be harmful. Your loved one might start to feel this pressure whenever he or she gets sick or travels on an airplane. Decongestants are designed to reduce swelling in the passageways around the nose, ears, and mouth. Before using any decongestants, your loved one must first speak with a doctor. Some over-the-counter decongestants can raise blood pressure and interact with certain medications. 

5. Give the Ears a Chance to Recover

The ringing many people hear after concerts and loud sporting events is caused by inflammation in the ears. Just like with other acute injuries, seniors need to give their ears a chance to recover after being irritated. Stepping out of a loud movie or concert for just a few minutes can reduce the swelling in the ears and prevent long-term damage. On average, the ears need around 16 hours to recover after a loud event.

Hearing loss can cause numerous complications for seniors who live alone at home. If your senior loved one needs hourly or live-in care, New Hampshire Home Care Assistance can help. Our caregivers can assist with exercise and mobility, prepare nutritious meals, provide timely medication reminders, and help with a wide array of other important daily tasks. To learn about our high-quality elderly care plans, give us a call at (603) 471-3004 today.