Helpful Steps to Take to Have a Healthy Hearing Holiday Season
With the seasons changing, the temperatures dropping, and the holidays coming, this time of year can be difficult for those with a hearing impairment. The holidays can be loud, as well as some of the outdoor activities we participate in during the winter months. The ice and snow add a layer of complexity to a person’s hearing aid, as hearing aids need extra care during the winter months.
Protecting your ears throughout the winter season is vital if you want to preserve your ability to hear. Check out some of the steps you can take to have a healthy hearing holiday season.
Your hearing aid is an expensive investment, so it is essential that you take extra care, especially during the winter months. The change in temperature that occurs from going to and from the outdoors to inside a warm house can cause moisture buildup. Moisture buildup can shorten the life of your hearing aid, as well as shorten your battery life. To help prevent this from occurring, cover your ears with a hat, earmuffs, or scarf every time you leave the house. Also, at night, make sure you remove the batteries and let your device air out. A hearing aid dehumidifier is highly recommended to help assist in removing excess moisture.
If you own a snowmobile or a snow blower, limit your time exposed to these machines and make sure you use earplugs or another form of ear protection. While most modern snowmobiles don’t put out more than 74 decimals of noise, this can still damage your hearing if you are exposed for a prolonged period of time. However, the noise from a snow blower can range from 90 to 106 decibels, so wearing ear protection is a must when you are operating one, and you will want to limit the amount of time exposed.
The holidays can be loud, as well as overwhelming for a person with a hearing impairment. While wearing ear protection around friends and relatives is not necessary, you will still want to watch your placement during holiday get-togethers. Make sure you sit away from speakers and other sources of sound (such as the kitchen) to help limit the amount of noise you are exposed too. Also, make sure you wear your hearing aid if you own one, this way you are not struggling to hear others. However, holiday gatherings can be overwhelming to the senses, so make sure you give your ears frequent breaks away from the hustle and bustle.
Many people don’t think of this, but there is a relationship between hearing loss and impaired balance. A recent study that was published by John Hopkins addressed the balance issues that occur when a person has impaired hearing. The research revealed that there is an increase in balance issues with patients who suffer from hearing loss. Impaired balance and dizziness are common, which can make walking outside during the winter months much more dangerous. Snow and ice can already make a person unstable, and if you are suffering from additional balance issues due to a hearing impairment, you will need to take extra care when walking outdoors during the winter season.