It’s now a great time for men to assess their health needs and make the necessary appointments. Due to social stigma, men often neglect their hearing health. That is particularly problematic since among adults aged 20 to 69 men’s likelihood of hearing loss is twice that of women. Given their increased risk of hearing impairment, men should consider taking charge of their hearing health.
Men and Risk Factors for Hearing Loss
Many men are in noisy occupations like construction and manufacturing, which place them at greater risk for noise-induced hearing loss. Hunting, using power tools, mowing the lawn, attending loud sporting events, and riding motorcycles are activities many men frequently engage in that make them more susceptible to hearing loss.
Smoking is another risk factor for hearing loss. Smokers have a higher incidence of hearing loss than nonsmokers. Men who quit smoking decrease their risk.
Finally, the risk of hearing loss grows as people age. About one-third of people aged 65 to 74 experience hearing loss. Among people aged 75 or more, approximately half are impacted by hearing loss. Due to the relationship between age and hearing loss, men aged 50 and over should have their hearing examined regularly.
Why Hearing Health Matters
Untreated hearing loss is closely related to negative outcomes, including depression, social isolation, and cognitive impairment. Hearing loss sometimes is an indication of cardiovascular problems. Also, untreated hearing loss has a detrimental effect on personal relationships.
What Men Can Do To Protect Their Hearing
Any environment in which people have to speak louder than normal to be heard by someone a few feet away is loud enough to damage your hearing. In such noisy environments, men can be pro-active to protect their hearing. While leaving a loud environment provides guaranteed protection, earplugs and earmuffs offer significant sound reduction when worn properly. Earmuff users need to make sure eyeglasses, a heavy beard, or sideburns don’t create a gap between their head and the earmuff cushions.
Signs You Need a Hearing Test
Hearing loss usually is gradual. That’s why someone who has hearing loss may not be aware of it. Houston area men who are experiencing the following should consider having their hearing checked by an audiologist in Houston.
- Frequently requesting people to repeat themselves
- Regularly needing the television or radio volume higher than others
- Following a conversation with two or more people is challenging
- Difficulty hearing people in settings with background noise like a restaurant
If you’re a man or a woman who would like to consult an audiologist in Houston, you’ll find friendly and expert staff at North Houston Hearing Solutions. Call today to schedule an appointment.
Dr. Lacey Brooks received a bachelor’s degree in biology and chemistry in 2003, and earned her doctorate of audiology in 2009. She completed her clinical internships and residency at various facilities within Houston Medical Center. Dr. Brooks is a professional member of the American Tinnitus Association (ATA), a fellow of the American Academy of Audiology (AAA), a member of the Texas Academy of Audiology (TAA), and is certified by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA). She is also the vice president of the Louisiana State University Houston Chapter Alumni Association.