The summer solstice finally arrives this week!
This brings plenty of opportunity for outdoor fun and activities the next few months.
But residents of Coatesville should take steps to protect their hearing from the many noisy hazards of the season.
Seasonal Dangers to Your Hearing
Who doesn’t love a warm summer day?
Ants invading your picnic aside, this is the time of year to enjoy fresh, juicy slices of watermelon; cool, refreshing dips in the pond; and ice cream.
ALL the ice cream.
Summer also brings a few potential dangers to your hearing – most notably, noise.
Exposure to decibel levels exceeding 85 dB – about the sound of traffic levels in Coatesville – can cause long-term hearing impairment if you don’t take precautions.
Noise-induced hearing loss isn’t confined to the summer months; it occurs year-round and is the number one cause of hearing loss in Pennsylvania.
In the summer months, the following activities can be dangerous to your hearing:
- Sporting events (baseball games, motocross, etc.)
- Motorized vehicles (motorcycles, boats, jet skis)
Fortunately, noise-induced hearing loss is the one type of hearing impairment that can be prevented.
Ensuring that you wear earplugs anytime you will be engaged in noisy activities will reduce your odds of causing harm to your hearing.
You can purchase a pair of cheap foam plugs from most any drugstore in town, but for a more precise fit and better protection, have your Coatesville audiologist order you a pair of custom earplugs made from silicone molds of your ear canals.
Tips for protecting your hearing this summer include:
- If you’re into fireworks (and who isn’t?), let somebody else put on the show. Fireworks generate decibel levels in excess of 150 dB – loud enough to cause instantaneous hearing loss. And lighting them yourself increases your risk of losing a body part or two that you’d probably rather hang onto.
- Noise isn’t the only summertime hearing hazard. High bacteria counts in standing bodies of water can cause an infection that might even lead to permanent hearing loss if it isn’t treated in time. Look for signs warning of danger and avoid swimming when bacterial counts are high.
- Even when bacterial counts are normal, water can still pose a danger when it enters your ear canals. Swimmer’s ear is a painful infection caused by exposure to water; to prevent it, wear swim plugs whenever taking a dip and dry your ears thoroughly after coming into contact with any water source. This includes the shower and the kiddie pool, too.
- If you wear hearing aids, be sure to protect them from heat and humidity, both of which can ruin the circuitry and render them useless. Don’t store them in a hot car, take them out if caught in a sudden downpour, and purchase a dehumidifier to remove excess moisture when they aren’t being worn.
For additional tips on protecting your hearing this summer, talk to your Coatesville audiologist.
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Coatesville, PA 19320
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Exton, PA 19341
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