Wait. Stop. What’s that you said? Sorry, I’m not following you…
How often have you started listening to a conversation, only to lose a line and then the entire thread of the discussion? Or missed a vital line in a movie, and then annoyed everyone by asking for an explanation? Or given up hope of following a great story that’s being told in a café or another public place?
It’s not something to be embarrassed about. At least one in every three adults over 65 has some degree of hearing loss and according to hearing research, most of us start to lose our hearing when we’re in our 50s, or even our 40s.
Fortunately, there are some things we can do to slow the natural progression of hearing loss and the first of these – whatever your age – is to protect your precious cochlea, the spiral-shaped bone in your inner ear that transmits soundwaves to your brain.
As these photos show, our cochlea contains tiny hair cells that detect sounds and send electrical impulses to our brains for interpretation. These cells begin to break down in old age, but can also be damaged when we’re younger, by the ruse of certain drugs (i.e. ototoxic), or – far more frequently – by ‘acoustic trauma’.
Acoustic trauma sounds dramatic, and it is! It refers to the ear damage caused by exposure to extremely loud sounds, such as explosions, loud vehicles or machines, or – far more commonly – loud music.
If you’ve ever been to a rock concert, you’ve placed extreme stress on your cochlea and your hair cells. The good news is that this damage takes time – so unless you’re one of the rock stars or work as a roadie, you’re unlikely to have done significant damage. However, the bad news is that our hair cells don’t regenerate – so once they’re gone, they’re gone.
World Hearing Day
The World Health Organization has declared March 3rd World Hearing Day – its annual celebration of good hearing practices and hearing health. The theme this year is “listening with care” – which, of course, starts with reducing one’s exposure to loud noise.
To commemorate the occasion, Tinnibot is partnering with one of the world’s leading inventors of protective equipment, 3M, to offer 10 free pairs of its E-A-R™ hi-fi earplugs.
These revolutionary earplugs reduce noise across all frequencies without distortion or muffling, so you can still enjoy the music – making them ideal for both musicians and their fans.
Tinnibot has launched a free hearing test inside its app, enabling you to screen your hearing in the comfort of your own home. To encourage people to screen their hearing, 3M is offering its special earplugs to 10 lucky app user who complete the Tinnibot’s online test. Share the hearing test with your family members to increase your chance of winning!
So, what have you got to lose – apart from more struggling conversations? Jump online now and check out your hearing at Tinnibot today. Who knows, it may be the beginning of a new, more engaged you!
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