5 ways to keep your ears safe, no matter where you are
The holiday season marks a wonderful time to reflect on gratitude and hope. For many people, this time of year usually means traveling to spend time with family and friends. This year, however, our typical traveling may not be possible due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the CDC’s recommendation to stay home for the holidays.
Even while staying healthy in place, it’s important to brush up on how to care for your hearing health when you are away from home, too. Here are some tips on keeping your ears healthy throughout the holiday season, no matter where you are:
- Pack your essentials
- Protect your ears from UV rays
- Wear earplugs in loud settings
- Keep your ears clean and dry
- Protect your hearing aids
Read on to learn more about how to care for your ears while away from home.
Pack your essentials
You don’t want to be caught away from home without essential items like earplugs, assistive listening devices, hearing aid chargers, and other things that help you hear easier, stay comfortable, and keep your ears healthy. Take a lesson from Santa and make a list of hearing loss-related things to pack and check it twice to make sure you don’t forget anything important before leaving home!
Protect your ears from UV rays
It’s not just the inside of your ears that need looking after – it’s important to care for the outside of your ears as well! While sun rays are weaker in the cooler months, it is still possible for your ears to get sunburned when you’re outside for extended periods. UV rays can reflect off water and snow in a “mirror” effect.
It’s easy to protect your ears from UV damage. You can wear a hat that covers your ears or apply sunscreen to them. If you’re outside all day, remember to reapply sunscreen according to the package directions. See more helpful information on how to protect your ears in winter weather here.
Wear earplugs in loud settings
We may not be able to attend loud concerts or sporting events this year, but there are other noisy environments where you’ll want to protect your ears. Construction work, a baby crying in the car, or a snowblower are all sounds that exceed the dangerous decibel level with prolonged exposure. If you are unable to avoid these sounds, keep your earplugs handy for these situations. It can make all the difference to your hearing health.
Keep your ears clean and dry
Swimmer’s ear is a common condition from swimming in lakes, swimming pools, and the ocean. It happens when moisture becomes trapped inside the ear, and it becomes infected. If you plan to swim in the area you are traveling, use waterproof earplugs to keep your ears dry. However, the opposite is true if you’re scuba diving. Because the water pressure changes rapidly while scuba diving, wearing earplugs doesn’t allow your ears to equalize to underwater pressure and may damage your hearing. In this case, use a towel to dry off your ears after diving.
Protect your hearing aids
If you use hearing aids, taking care of them is just as important as caring for your ears. There are a few extra precautions to be mindful of with hearing aids in the wintertime in addition to year-round travel care. Hearing aids prefer warm and dry environments to function, so avoid setting them on the windowsill or outside in the cold. Putting them away in a protective carrying case in your pocketbook or a room temperature spot will help them continue to work in tip-top shape.
Staying home for this holiday season is the safest option for you and the people you care about. While you are taking measures to stay healthy, your ear health is important too. Knowing how to care for your ears at home and while away is essential to protect your hearing, no matter how you celebrate the holidays.
Keep reading our blog for more information about how to care for your ears and other wellness tips. And to stay in touch with family and friends this holiday season without ever leaving home, check out our selection of captioned hearing loss telephones.