Photo credit: Keira Burton

by Daniel Fink, MD, Chair, The Quiet Coalition

NPR’s Life Kit site has a wonderfully simple cartoon with an accompanying soundtrack about protecting your ears to avoid hearing loss. I would broaden the title to “Avoid Auditory Damage” because protecting your ears to avoid hearing loss will most likely also afford protection against development of tinnitus (ringing in the ears) and hyperacusis (a sensitivity to loud noise that doesn’t bother others).

Noise-induced hearing loss is the only type of hearing loss that is entirely preventable. Avoid exposure to loud noise, leave the noisy environment or insert your earplugs and your ears should last a lifetime. If it sounds loud, it’s too loud and your auditory health is at risk.