If you are a firearms enthusiast and practice shooting often, you need to protect your hearing. Just one shot from your pistol or rifle can lead to hearing loss. If you are exposed to gunshots regularly without hearing protection, the hearing damage can be severe.
On that note, it’s just as important to be informed about hearing loss myths, like the following:
Losing Your Hearing Has No Other Effects
Losing your hearing is a problem, but many don’t realize how it can affect other parts of your life.
Research suggests that hearing loss can have other adverse effects, including a greater risk of dementia, depression, and social isolation.
People who lose their hearing often say you don’t realize how essential hearing is to keep you connected in life. When it’s gone, the psychological effects can be devastating.
Imagine not being able to hear music or the conversations of your loved ones. Things that you have taken for granted for years are no longer part of your life.
Researchers also report that having trouble hearing what is going on in your environment can stress our brains, making it harder to remember things.
Fortunately, hearing aids have improved dramatically in the last 10 years, so there is plenty of hope. But it’s always better to maintain your hearing as long as you can.
Earplugs Are Good Enough For The Shooting Range
When you practice shooting your firearms at the shooting range, you may think that earplugs are good enough protection. But did you know that a typical gunshot can be between 140 and 165 decibels? Regular exposure to this level of noise will damage your hearing.
Earplugs are not enough to reduce the sound of a gunshot below 85 decibels, which is the point where noise can damage hearing. To protect your hearing, you should invest in a high-quality pair of hearing protection headphones.
Reading Lips Replaces Hearing
If you lose your hearing, it’s easy to think that you will learn how to read lips. It’s true that some people with this problem learn how to read lips well enough to follow some conversations.
However, like with anything, people have different abilities to read lips. Training and practice help, but some will always be able to do it better than others. Also, note that the best lip reader usually only understands about 45% of what was said.
Hearing Loss Is Only For Older People
While loss of hearing happens more in the senior population, it can affect people in any age bracket. If you’re in your 20s and regularly attend rock concerts without hearing protection, you could lose a significant amount of your hearing faster than you think.
Much of the hearing loss that Pete Townshend experienced was when he was in his 30s and 40s after many years of playing loud music without hearing protection.
There Is No Cure For Tinnitus
Tinnitus is a persistent ringing in the ears often caused by too much exposure to loud noises. This ringing in the ears can be debilitating to people because they can never have a moment of silence.
While we cannot cure this problem, treatments are available, including removing earwax, buying hearing aids, and even different prescription medications.
As Americans live longer than previous generations, it’s smart to do everything you can to protect your hearing. Hopefully, the information outlined here will help you to safeguard your hearing so you can get the most out of a long, productive life.