We always think about how healthy lifestyle choices impact our bodies in terms of inches, pounds lost and strength gained but our special guest blogger John O’Conner points out how these choices can also benefit our hearing.

Chronic exposure to loud music on an iPod or at a concert or even the daily drone of the gardener’s lawn mower can lead to hearing loss in an individual.  Harmful, repetitive noises can begin a cycle of hearing loss that can occur slowly and, unfortunately, become irrecoverable. Often overlooked, hearing loss is one of the most commonly reported ailments that people have when they visit their doctor. However, healthy living is a powerful way to prevent hearing loss and hearing related disorders.

A healthy lifestyle requires a number of different commitments. The first is commitment to a healthy diet.  Proper nutrition leads to a heightened immune system, which makes the body strong to fight infection. An infection in the body can easily lead to hearing loss if it is not healed. Proper nutrition protects the body from infection and therefore can help to stave off hearing loss. Healthy lifestyle also requires a commitment to substance-free living.

Cigarette smoke, and more importantly, second hand exposure to cigarette smoke can lead to hearing loss.  It is vital that cigarettes and cigarette smoke is removed from daily lifestyle in order to promote and insure health, vitality, and functional hearing.

Exercise is also a commitment to a healthy lifestyle.  Proper exercise not only keeps the immune system at its strongest, it also moves the blood in the body and therefore cleans the blood and keeps it rich with nutrients. Hearing is dependent on healthy blood, nerves, and blood vessels.  High blood sugar, which can occur due to poor lifestyle choices such as overindulgence in alcohol, eating processed foods, and partaking in too little exercise can damage the nerves that are necessary for proper hearing.

A healthy lifestyle is critical for hearing health.  To encourage healthy hearing in an individual who is losing hearing, invest in a hearing aid.  Hearing aids make the wearers less anxious, less frustrated, and more involved in social relationships.  Some tips to protect one’s hearing include turning down the music to a lower frequency, investing in ear protectors which block noise either electronically or mechanically, and engaging in a healthy lifestyle to protect and perhaps improve hearing for years to come.