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Hearing Aids for Young Adults: Making Sense of the Options

Why would a young person need hearing aids?

We hear from our patients that the first signs of hearing loss in young people are usually at the same time they’re experiencing another change in their lives like moving to a new city, starting a job, or getting married. We want our patients to be confident and comfortable with themselves and their hearing loss while going through these changes.

It can be difficult for young adults to have an intimate conversation with friends or family members in a noisy restaurant. A conversation is often much more difficult than it should be because ambient sound drowns out voices and makes it difficult to listen.

Young adults can also struggle with specific tasks like learning a musical instrument or taking advanced math classes in college. They may need to listen to the teacher from several feet away due to background noise such as traffic or other people talking.

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What causes hearing loss in 20s?

Hearing loss in young adults can be caused by genetics, noise exposure, or viral infections. Hearing loss is usually a combination of age and the amount of time you’ve been exposed to risk factors such as noise.

Genetics: The tendency to have hearing loss is genetic. First degree relatives like parents, siblings, or children all carry the same genes, so there is a strong chance that they can also have hearing loss. Although no one in your family may have hearing loss now, it can be present at birth or show up later in life.

Secondary to noise: Listening to loud noises like music, guns, or explosions can damage your ears and keep you from hearing normally.

Hearing loss caused by deep, continuous noise is called Secondary to Noise (SN). It’s a common cause of hearing loss in young adults. It occurs because the hair cells at the bottom of the inner ear are destroyed by the sound waves. The damaged hair cells break down and no longer produce an electrical signal, which causes permanent hearing loss.

SN is thought to affect approximately 25% of people with clinically measurable hearing loss.

A combination of SN and age may be responsible for most early-onset hearing loss in young adults.

How do you deal with hearing loss at a young age?

Although hearing loss in young adults can be very frustrating, it doesn’t have to be a difficult adjustment. We recommend that young adults keep their hearing loss under control by using the following strategies:

Set healthy expectations for yourself. If you want to hear perfectly, it won’t happen in your lifetime – no hearing aid is going to help you hear perfectly just because you want it to. Accept that what might be considered normal for your 20s is different from what’s possible at 40 or 60 years old.

Let go of perfectionism about your hearing ability. Forget about what everyone else thinks and explain your concerns to yourself instead. Your hearing loss doesn’t have to be a major handicap. It’s just another part of who you are.

Find others who can relate to your situation. If you haven’t come across any other young adults with hearing loss, you may feel very alone and frightened about the future. Your hearing loss is not going to define you or hold you back in life. Just remember, there is life after hearing aids!

What level of hearing loss requires a hearing aid?

Not every loss of hearing requires a hearing aid. The type and severity of your hearing loss will determine how you can best manage the losses and get the most out of hearing aids.

Young adults with high-frequency hearing loss that can be managed well with hearing aids may receive little benefit from using aids. However, a prescription is recommended if your hearing loss causes problems in daily life.

High-frequency hearing loss can be managed with a reasonable quality of life with different strategies such as:

Listening to a TV or radio at a louder volume or turning off the TV and turning up the sound on your phone. Consider getting a battery back-up for electronics like DVR or cable TV boxes to provide emergency power during power outages. This will allow you to continue listening to your favorite shows, and it may also save you from calling someone in the middle of the night because you didn’t know what time it was.

Using high-quality hearing aids with a hearing aid programmer. You can temporarily turn down the volume on your device or program it to play a sound for you in case you haven’t heard it since your last hearing test.

Does hearing loss always worsen?

No. In most cases, hearing loss stops or doesn’t get worse over time, but this does not apply to all people. Some people experience hearing loss that is permanent, or progressive (ie, they get worse as you grow older). A few people will experience hearing loss that gets better over time.

What can I do to prevent hearing loss in young adults?

  • Reduce exposure to noise by wearing good headphones or earplugs whenever possible. Pay attention to how much music you listen to on your headphones and how loud the volume is.
  • Wear ear muffs and ear plugs when shooting or riding snowmobiles since these activities can be damaging to your ears even if you don’t have any problems now. Muffs will help protect your ears from over-hearing when you are in extremely loud environments.
  • Take regular breaks when outdoors to hear the natural sounds. It is also good to go out and hear nature, particularly birds chirping and crickets singing while you are walking.
  • Limit exposure to loud noises by avoiding concerts with music that contains very high levels of noise.
  • Be careful about the use of recreational drugs and alcohol before you go to a concert. If you are going to listen to loud music for a long time, don’t drink any alcohol or take recreational drugs and, if possible, eat something before you go so your body has more energy reserves.
  • Do not play your stereo or TV because this can damage your ears even if you’re sitting in the back. If there is no one else around (ie, when sleeping), try using earplugs and set a timer on your alarm so it only turns on for 15 minutes.
  • Choose what kind of music you listen to carefully since certain music can cause damage with prolonged use.

How can I restore my hearing naturally?

In most cases, you can naturally restore your hearing by eating certain foods. But this only works for people who have a mild degree of hearing loss, and sometimes not even then. It will take two to three months to see any improvement and it is difficult to judge the cost-effectiveness of these interventions.

A diet that consists primarily of fresh vegetables, fruits and raw foods has been found to help improve hearing. Many vitamins and nutrients are required for good health, including Vitamin C, zinc, flavinoids, iron and magnesium. Foods that contain these nutrients include courgettes (zucchini), spinach and nuts such as walnuts or cashews. You can include juices from green leafy vegetables in your diet.

How can you prevent hearing loss from getting worse?

If you’re already experiencing hearing loss, you can use a number of natural remedies to help improve your hearing and prevent it from getting worse. You can try out these natural remedies if you feel that your hearing is worsening or if there are any warning signs such as tinnitus.

Ginger helps with decongestion and increasing circulation

Ginger root powder helps open up the blood vessels which translate to better circulation in the ears and thus increased blood flow. Better blood flow means less pressure on the eardrums and therefore reduced risk of permanent loss of hearing. Apart from this, ginger also has antiviral properties.

This means that it may be able to reduce the infections or inflammation of the inner ear, which can lead to partial or complete loss of hearing.

You can use fresh ginger root powder that you can buy from a store or made at home by chopping up a small piece of ginger root into very small pieces, taking out the middle portion and blending with just enough water so that it turns into a thick paste/pulp. You only need a pinch of this paste/pulp mixed in a glass of warm water and honey to drink daily for best results.

Bitters:

Bitter herbs or spices are used in many different ways to help with inflammation and have the ability to stop the bad bacteria in your body from taking over. I like to use a blackstrap molasses that contains sodium benzoate. The sodium benzoate is an antiseptic agent that can fight off any bacteria and germs that you may be exposed too.

I also like to add this bitter tasting molasses to my hot tea occasionally while I drink it. Here’s some of the best-bitters you can buy:

Garlic:

Garlic is an amazing ingredient that can fight off infections. It has powerful anti-inflammatory properties which can help with any swelling you may experience in your ear. It may also stop your ear from getting any “worse” or healing if you’ve recently experienced a cold or viral infection.

If you want to use garlic as an ingredient, you can add it to things like hummus, pesto or even just plain olive oil and consume a little bit every day.

Oregano Oil

To be clear, oregano oil and red wine are amazing supplements that contain “super antioxidants”. However, you can use the oregano oil as a supplement to help you with your hearing when you are feeling that it is going to get worse or any signs of tinnitus show up.

Vitamin C

Oxygen helps with tissue repair and repair of damaged cells in the ear. It’s a natural anti-inflammatory and also has the ability to turn off harmful bacteria. You can consume this vitamin by consuming citrus fruits which contain vitamin C, drinking juice from berries or even supplementing your diet with extra vitamin C at meals when possible.

At what age is hearing loss normal?

In the US 1 in 3 people have hearing loss by the age of 64

Hearing loss is very common in young adults. It’s not part of aging but it is the natural result of things that you do and the environment that you live in. The louder noises like music, voices, sirens and loud vehicles can damage your ears at a much younger age than if you lived in another country.

What happens if hearing loss is not treated?

As your hearing gets worse, you may find that it is harder to work or hear in noisy environments like restaurants, bars and concerts. You’ll start to miss out on conversations with friends while they talk over you and find it hard to hear the TV in the morning. If you are unable to hold a conversation or start feeling tired all the time, it can be a sign of an underlying condition like hypertension or diabetes.

How fast does hearing loss progress?

We don’t know how many people have hearing loss and how fast it occurs. It is hard to predict. For young adults, it depends a lot on their lifestyle choices and what kind of life they live. For example, those who are exposed to loud noises on a regular basis (like nightclubs or noisy pubs) should do everything they can do reduce their exposure to loud noise as much as possible.

They also need to make sure that they are getting enough sleep.

If you have healthy hearing, you may just notice a difference in your hearing over time.

Do you need a hearing aid for mild hearing loss?

This is where it’s hard to give a clear answer because it’s all about the result you get from a hearing test. Some people don’t need hearing aids even if they have severe hearing loss.

However, if you start to notice that you can no longer hear people that are sitting next to you in a restaurant or watching TV, then you should consider getting hearing aids since they greatly help improve your quality of life by allowing you to hear things like people talking around you, TV and movies much clearer.

What is the best hearing aid for speech clarity?

There are different types of speech clarity and you need to consider all the factors when buying hearing aids. You should ideally choose to buy an over-the-ear model that is best suited to you so that you can have the best fit. You should also get a model with an in-line microphone which can pick up sounds from around you so that people talking near you can hear what you are saying.

The level of quality and price depends on how much time your current hearing aids cost and how much it would cost to update your other devices if necessary.

Noises When Flying

The following infographic shows a list of the various noises when you are out and about. Any noise over 70-80db over a long period of time may cause damage to your hearing. A noise of over 120dB may cause immediate harm to your ears

hearing infographic 5

Can you fire someone for being deaf?

Under the Equality Act 2010, employers are not allowed to make decisions on whether to dismiss you based solely on your disability. However, there is a set of exceptions that allow employers to refuse employment based on your disability.

One of these exceptions is where a physical impairment or sensory impairment would prevent you from doing the essential functions in that job or cause significant problems for the employer because you can’t communicate effectively with customers, colleagues or other staff.

If this is not the case, employers may still be able to refuse your application based on other reasons like having the wrong qualifications even if they have done so for someone else in the past.

Do cheap hearing aids work?

Cheap hearing aids can sometimes be a great way to get a high-quality device without paying the full cost of the device. However, cheap hearing aids may not always work perfectly for everyone because they usually don’t include the latest technology or have been made with cheaper materials. Cheap hearing aids may also only last for 3 months before you need to replace it.

Are expensive hearing aids better?

Expensive hearing aids are basically better than cheap hearing aids because they use more advanced technology which makes it easier for you hear and understand what people are saying. However, when it comes to hearing aids, you can’t always have the best device because some features need to be included or left out depending on your specific hearing problem and how much your insurance covers.

Amplifiers can make things louder but if they aren’t used correctly, they won’t improve your ability to hear what is being said and may even make it harder to understand speech so that you end up missing words. This is why most people prefer using a dedicated device that helps them with hearing like a hearing aid instead of an amplifier.

How often do you need to clean your hearing aids?

You should clean your hearing aids at least once every month. The best time was to do this is before you go to bed every night so that you can get rid of dust and mould from the battery compartment. You can also clean the light panel and the ear clips which are typically made out of plastic.

They should be cleaned every month because they keep the device working properly by keeping debris out of the ear itself. The filters also need to be replaced and cleaned regularly too.

The best way to clean your hearing aids is by using a mild anti-bacterial solution like a drops or wash-out solution.

How long does it take for your brain to adjust to a hearing aid?

Six week to six months adjustment period. For some people, it may take much longer than this for their brain to adjust to the hearing aid. It depends on many factors like how long you have had the condition, how severe it was and what you had to go through in order for the doctor or specialist to have manually adjusted your hearing aid.

How bad does hearing have to be for hearing aids?

Your hearing loss should be severe enough that you need to wear a hearing aid. Otherwise, you may not get the benefit of wearing a hearing aid. However, it is still difficult to predict how much hearing loss you will need to have in order to benefit from wearing a hearing aid and keep it in your ear as long as possible.

Conclusion

As you can see, there is no easy answer to how much music is too loud and how long should you wear earplugs when listening to loud music. Everyone will be different and has different circumstances so it will depend on what works best for you. However, what we can say is that listening to loud music will damage your ears and, in the long run, you are likely to lose your hearing.

By reducing your exposure to music as much as possible (especially loud music) you can significantly reduce the risk of damaging your ears. However, if you do plan on attending a concert or festival this summer then just remember to wear earplugs whenever possible and try not to stand too close to anyone playing an instrument or singing so that you don’t have difficulty hearing later on in life.

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Other Questions

Do hearing aids improve balance?

Yes they are better than nothing if you have a mild to moderate hearing loss but they will not improve your balance (balance is not something that you can hear). If you have a very severe hearing loss and sign is already affecting your balance then by all means get yourself some hearing aids.

Does being deaf in one ear qualify as a disability?

Disability is a broad concept and we will consider the potential effects on a person’s life and their physical fitness to perform daily activities, work or study. In general, a person who is unable to hear in both ears will be considered deaf. A person with isolated hearing loss can still be considered disabled as they are still limited in their ability to perform certain daily activities.

What is an audiologist and what does an audiologist do?

An audiologist (hearing-health professional) is a healthcare practitioner who specializes in the diagnosis, assessment, management, and rehabilitation of all types of hearing loss including conductive, sensorineural, and mixed. He/she must have graduated from an accredited college-degree program specifically in Audiology (which takes approximately four years) or earned a Masters degree in Audiology from an accredited university outside the United States.

About This Article 

Date : June 12, 2021

Author : Nick, Website Owner And Writer

Experience : Hi, I am Nick, and I have suffered with ear problems my whole life, mainly tinnitus. I have tried a lot of products to help protect my ears over this period, and several devices to block out the constant ringing

“Are you having problems hearing? If so, those around you already know it. Hearing loss is no laughing matter, so don’t be a punchline.”

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