Hand holding hearing protection earmuffs that can prevent hearing loss.

Chances are you’ve already detected that you don’t hear as well as you once did. Hearing loss often develops because of decisions you make without knowing they’re impacting your hearing.

With a few basic lifestyle changes, many kinds of hearing loss can be prevented. What follows are 6 tips that will help you preserve your hearing.

1. Manage Your Blood Pressure

Consistently high blood pressure is not good. A study revealed that hearing loss was 52% more likely with individuals who have higher than average blood pressure and they are more likely to have other health issues as well.

Avoid damage to your hearing by taking measures to reduce your blood pressure. See a doctor right away and never disregard your high blood pressure. Management of blood pressure includes correct diet, exercise, stress management, and following your doctor’s advice.

2. Stop Smoking

There are plenty of good reasons to quit smoking, here’s another: Hearing loss is 15% more likely to impact smokers. What’s even more alarming is that there’s a 28% higher probability of someone developing hearing problems if they are frequently subjected to second-hand smoke. The dangerous consequences of second-hand smoke are not only harmful, but they also hang in the air for long periods.

If you smoke, protect your hearing and think about quitting. Take actions to minimize your exposure to second-hand smoke if you spend time with a smoker.

3. Control Your Diabetes

One out of four adults is either pre-diabetic or diabetic. Unless they make some serious lifestyle changes, someone who is pre-diabetic will probably get diabetes within 5 years.

Blood vessels that are damaged by high blood sugar don’t efficiently carry nutrients. A diabetic person is more than twice as likely to cope with hearing loss compared to a non-diabetic person.

If you suffer from diabetes, take the steps necessary to properly control it. Safeguard your hearing by making lifestyle changes if you are at risk of type 2 diabetes.

4. Lose Some Weight

This isn’t about body image or feeling good about yourself. It’s about your health. As your Body Mass Index (BMI) goes up, so does your risk of hearing loss and other health problems. A slightly obese woman (with a 30 to 34 BMI) has a 17% increased risk of developing hearing loss. A moderately obese person has a 25% risk of hearing loss if they have a BMI of 40.

Take action to lose that extra weight. Your life can be prolonged and your hearing can be protected by something as simple as walking for 30 minutes every day.

5. OTC Medications Shouldn’t be Overused

Hearing loss can be the consequence of some over-the-counter (OTC) medications. The danger increases when these medications are taken on a regular basis over lengthy periods of time.

Medicines like acetaminophen, ibuprofen, naproxen, and aspirin are known to lead to hearing loss. Take these medications in moderation and only with your doctor’s advice if you need to take them more regularly.

If you’re taking the recommended dose for the periodic headache, studies indicate you’ll probably be okay. The risk of hearing loss increases up to 40% for men, however, when these medicines are used on a daily basis.

Always follow your doctor’s advice. But if you’re using these drugs every day to deal with chronic pain or thin your blood, talk to your doctor about lifestyle changes you can implement to lessen your dependence on OTC drugs.

6. Eat More Broccoli

Broccoli is high in nutrients and vitamins including C and K and also has lots of iron. Iron is essential to blood circulation and a healthy heart. Nutrients and oxygen are transported to your cells which helps keep them nourished and healthy and iron is a significant part of this process.

For vegetarians or people who don’t eat much meat, eating a sufficient amount of plant-based iron is essential. You’re more likely to be iron deficient because the iron found in plants is less bioavailable than the iron found in meat.

More than 300,000 individuals were examined by Pennsylvania State University. The researchers determined participants with anemia (severe iron deficiency) were twice as likely to experience sensorineural hearing loss as those without the disorder. Sensorineural hearing loss is the scientific name for permanent hearing loss associated with aging.

The inner ear has delicate hair cells that detect sounds and connect with the brain to transmit the volume and frequency of those sounds. If these hair cells die because of poor circulation or other concerns arising from iron deficiency, they never grow back.

Don’t wait to get a hearing test because you’re never too young. Apply these steps to your life and prevent hearing loss.