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May 31 is the World Health Organisation’s “ No tobacco day’.
In addition to a long list of negative health effects and reduction in overall health and wellbeing, smoking can be forerunner for hearing loss. Smokers are 70% more likely to have a hearing loss compared to non-smokers. Many of the substances inhaled in a puff of cigarette smoke are ototoxic. Ototoxic chemicals are chemicals that have a toxic effect on the ear and balance system. Smoking can lead to hearing loss, tinnitus and balance problems. The prevalence of hearing loss in smokers is related to the dose of cigarette smoke; more smoking the higher the incidence and degree of hearing loss.
How cigarette smoke affects hearing:
• Nicotine and carbon monoxide restricts blood flow to the tiny and delicate blood supply of the inner ear causing damage to the cochlear hair cells, these hair cells that are responsible for detecting sounds
• Nicotine interferes with messenger systems along the auditory nerves
• Smoking irritates the Eustachian tube and lining of the middle ear creating middle ear issues
• Smoking causes release of free radicals in the body
• Smoking can make you more susceptible to the effects of damage to the inner ear by loud noise. Smokers are more susceptible to getting noise induced hearing loss
If you are a smoker and concerned about your ears, please arrange to have your hearing assessed. Hearing loss can impact communication, relationships, productivity and advancement at work.
Are you ready to stop smoking?
Frequently having trouble following the conversation when the conversation moves quickly from one person to the next, such as, in meeting or at the dinner table might be a sign of hearing loss. Maybe it's time for a hearing assessment? Read more about a comprehensive hearing assessment at Melbourne Audiology Centre. If a hearing loss is identified, we will talk to you about the solutions available for you.
If you have a hearing loss you could be constantly straining to hear what is going on. This can be tiring and may leave you exhausted by the end of the day. If you find that after a day of talking, meeting, chatting and communicating with colleagues, family or friend that you are tired or have a headache, it could be because of your efforts to hear better, it's a sign of possible hearing loss. Book a hearing assessment at Melbourne Audiology Centre.
When people sound like they are mumbling, it may be because you can't hear some speech sounds. People with hearing loss commonly can't hear high pitch sounds and it's the high pitch speech sounds that give clarity to speech. You or someone you know may say things like, " I can hear, but I don't understand what people are saying" or " I can hear, there's nothing wrong with my hearing, young people today don't know how to enunciate properly, they all mumble". If the people around you sound like they are mumbling, book a comprehensive hearing assessment at Melbourne Audiology Centre to rule out hearing loss.
Your LinkI have been working as an audiologist for over twenty years now (how time flies), and every day I feel privileged to be involved in helping people who would otherwise struggle with one of our basic but most important human needs – communication.
Tinnitus is a perceived sound in the ears or head that does not originate from an external sound source. It is often described as a ringing, whistling, whooshing, buzzing or pulsing sound. Some people describe it as being there all the time, and for others, it can come and go.
With presbyacusis (age related hearing loss) hearing soft high pitch sounds becomes difficult. High pitch speech sounds include /th/, /s/, /f/, /h/ or /k/ and these sounds are often confused or misheard. For example /f/ and /s/ sounds can sound the same to someone with mild hering loss. One of the first signs of presbyacusus is saying 'Pardon" or "what" frequently, especially when there is some background noise, such as when in a cafe. If you are saying 'Pardon" or "what" frequently, it may be a sign of hearing loss. Book your comprehensive hearing assessment at Melbourne Audiology Centre
Statistics estimate that 1 in 6 Australians have hearing loss and like any medical problem, the sooner you address the issue the better. Our ears detect sounds and our brain actually 'hears'. There are many benefits of doing something about a hearing loss including; improved quality of life and protecting against cognitive decline, dementia and depression. Similar to the way our eyes change with age, hearing can also gradually decrease with ageing- this is called presbyacusis. We recommend that after the age of 55, you should have your hearing assessed every 3 years. Book your comprehensive hearing assessment at Melbourne Audiology Centre.