You encounter noise everywhere-at school, in shopping malls, in the workplace and even at home. Repeated exposure to loud sounds or continuous din can damage the sensitive structures of the inner ear and ruin your hearing. Unfortunately, hearing loss can progress so gradually you may not recognize itís happening. To help prevent noise-induced hearing loss, the American Academy of Family Physicians suggests these precautions:
- Reduce your exposure to noise whenever possible, especially if you work in a loud environment.
- Wear earplugs when youíll be exposed to loud or prolonged noises.
- Donít try to drown out unwanted noise with other sounds.
- Avoid using several noisy machines at the same time.
- Have your hearing tested every year, especially if youíre exposed to lots of noise at work or at home.