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Ear Care General

Noise and Ear

Too loud noise damages sensitive nerve endings in the inner ear (delicate cells called cilia) and causes sensorineural loss. Sensitivity to sound is different for each person.
Sudden exposure to loud noise may cause temporary sensorineural hearing loss which usually recovers over 24 to 48 hours.

But if a sound is too loud, or the loud sound is too close or loud sound is exposed over a long period of time (more than 85 dB), the permanent sensorineural hearing loss can occur.

And 85 decibels is not as loud as you will think. The sound from an iPod shuffle is usually 115 db, and with fireworks, it goes at 150 db.

  • People with occupations involving exposure to noise above 85 decibels over an 8 hour period daily are also at risk. These include industries like mining, construction, drilling and agriculture.
  • And now people who love to play golf using latest titanium drivers are at risk of reduced hearing because of noise generated when it strikes the ball. (ref-British medical journal)
  • The person working in noise above 85 dB should use noise protection devices-ear plugs and ear muffs. It is as simple a concept as using goggles to protect your eyes from UV rays of the sun. It is for Musicians also.
  • Do periodic hearing check-ups. And on the earliest sign of noise trauma like irritability, buzzing sound in ear or difficulty in hearing, visit your physician.
  • Turn down the volume of MP3 player/television.
  • Do not stand directly near to the source of the noise.

General ear care: Protect your Sensitive Organ for Hearing

  • Outer ear can be wiped with a washcloth or soft towel. If water goes in after the head shower or swimming mere dabbing with a towel with head turned to the side, cleans water.
  • You can use ready-made the preparation of alcohol-based to dry the ear if you are sure that you don’t have an ear infection.
  • Do not put anything in the ear, remember it is not only for pins; it is for earbuds and q-tips as well, believed to be safe and made for ear-cleaning( even most intelligent people think so).
  • The ear is not a cooking-range, does not require oil, garlic and so on.
  • Ear wax is not a disease, rather a protective secretion which comes out by its own where it can be wiped out.
  • Excess wax causing obstruction is to be removed by your clinician. Usually small amount of wax is secreted which
  • comes out by its own, a process helped by jaw movement.
  • During ascent and descent while air-travelling, swallow frequently to keep Eustachian tube open, infant can be put to bottle feeding.

  • Avoid air-travel during cold/sinusitis, but if not avoidable use nasal/oral decongestant before ascent and decent.

  • Do not blow nose forcefully during cold, it forces secretion towards middle ear via Eustachian-tube.
  • Take care of upper respiratory tract infection/sinusitis to reduce risk of ear infection.
  • During infant feeding, keep his head high to avoid milk/fluid entering middle ear via Eustachian tube as infants have short and horizontal tube.
Visit your Doctor

If you have excess itching, pain in the ear, blocked ear, ringing in the ear, drainage from ear, impairment in hearing, dizziness, uncontrolled URI/sinusitis, visit a doctor.

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