It’s likely that you’ve already noticed that you don’t hear as well as you once did. In most cases, we don’t even recognize that our decisions are negatively affecting our hearing.
With a few simple lifestyle changes, many types of hearing loss can be avoided. Let’s explore six surprising secrets that will help you protect your hearing.
1. Manage Your Blood Pressure
It’s not good if your blood pressure stays high. A study determined that people with above-average blood pressure are 52% more likely to have hearing loss, not to mention other health problems.
Take actions to lower your blood pressure and prevent hearing damage. Don’t dismiss high blood pressure or wait to see a doctor. Blood pressure management includes proper diet, exercise, stress management, and following your doctor’s orders.
2. Stop Smoking
Here’s one more reason to quit: Smokers are 15% more likely to suffer from hearing loss. What’s even more alarming is that there’s a 28% higher chance of someone developing hearing issues if they are regularly exposed to second-hand smoke. Even if you leave the room, smoke remains for long periods of time with harmful consequences.
Think about protecting your hearing, if you’re a smoker, by quitting. If you hang out with a smoker, take steps to decrease your exposure to second-hand smoke.
3. Manage Your Diabetes
Diabetes or pre-diabetes affects one in four adults. A pre-diabetic person is extremely likely to develop diabetes within 5 years unless they make significant lifestyle changes.
Blood vessels that are injured by high blood sugar don’t effectively carry nutrients. Compared to a person who doesn’t have diabetes, a diabetic person has more than twice the chance of developing hearing loss.
If you suffer from diabetes, protect your hearing by taking the correct steps to control it. If you are at risk of getting type 2 diabetes, safeguard your hearing by making lifestyle changes to avoid it.
4. Lose Some Weight
This isn’t about body image or feeling great about yourself. It’s about your health. Hearing loss and other health problems increase as your Body Mass Index (BMI) increases. The risk of developing hearing loss increases by 17% for a slightly obese woman with a BMI of 30 to 34. For someone with a BMI of 40 (moderate obesity), the risk increases to 25%.
Work to get rid of some of that extra weight. Your life can be prolonged and your hearing can be safeguarded by something as simple as walking for 30 minutes every day.
5. OTC Medicines Shouldn’t be Overused
Some over-the-counter (OTC) medicines can lead to hearing impairment. The risk goes up when these medicines are taken on a regular basis over lengthy periods of time.
Medications such as acetaminophen, naproxen, ibuprofen, and aspirin are known to cause hearing loss. Take these drugs sparingly and seek advice from your doctor if you’re taking them on a regular basis.
Studies reveal that you’ll most likely be okay if you’re taking these medications periodically in the recommended doses. Using them daily, however, increases the risk of hearing loss by as much as 40% for men.
Your doctor’s guidance should always be implemented. Your doctor might be able to suggest some lifestyle changes that will reduce your dependence on these drugs if you are taking them every day.
6. Eat More Broccoli
Broccoli is full of nutrients and vitamins such as C and K and also is high in iron. Iron is integral to a healthy heart and proper blood circulation. Iron helps your blood carry nutrients and oxygen to cells to keep them healthy and nourished.
If you’re a vegetarian or don’t eat much meat, it’s important that you consume enough plant-based iron. You’re more likely to be iron deficient because the iron found in plants is less bioavailable than the iron found in meat.
Pennsylvania State University researchers examined more than 300,000 people. People who have anemia (extreme iron deficiency) are twice as likely, according to this research, to experience sensorineural hearing loss than people who have typical iron concentrations. Age-related irreversible hearing loss is what the technical term “sensorineural hearing loss” refers to.
The inner ear has tiny hair cells that pick up sounds and interact with the brain to transmit the volume and frequency of those sounds. If poor circulation or an iron deficiency causes these little hairs to die they will never grow back.
You’re never too young to have your hearing examined, so don’t wait until it’s too late. Apply these steps to your life and reduce hearing loss.