Can what you do when you are young affect your hearing when you get older?
Gwen Robinson has suffered from allergies all of her life, so she suspected congestion may be part of the reason why she has pressure in her ear, making it hard for her to hear. But she also wondered if time was taking its toll on her hearing.
“Sometimes I have to have people repeat what they say to me,” 54-year-old Robinson said.
Turns out, many of us gradually do experience hearing loss as we age. But the way you treat your hearing in your younger years affects its function later. Prior to mid-life, nerve hearing loss usually is not an issue. But Dr. Paul Atwater suggests if things seem muted – get to the doctor to see if the problem is wax buildup. Also, don’t use a cotton swab to clean out your ears. It only pushes the wax further inside. Don’t smoke. Also, turn down the volume.
“Noise exposure is the most common cause of a hearing loss in a younger person,” said Dr. Atwater.
That noise, certain medical conditions, and your family history can contribute to hearing loss as you age. You may inherit the tendency towards losing your hearing as you get into your late 50,’s, and beyond.
As for Robinson, it doesn’t appear that she has hearing loss due age, so she is trying allergy medications, hoping to find some relief.
Hearing loss can be a normal part of aging, but what you do when you are younger can often affect how well you hear in your golden years.
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