The ear is an important organ of the body. It helps us not only in hearing but also in maintaining the balance of the body. The ear is divided into three parts, the external ear, middle ear and inner year. If proper care is not taken, then any of these parts can get infected and cause a lot of problems. We have many habits we are not aware of that are unhealthy and could cause damage to our ears.
Here are seven of such habits which we should avoid for the good health of our ears.
This is one of the main contributors to hear loss. People either subject their ear to loud music from headphones or have a habit of listening to loud music. Also some people work near places where there is continuous loud noise near them. The inside of ear contains small hairs that act as receptors for hearing. Very loud noises could break those hairs which do not grow back. The best solution from this is to use ear plugs or earmuffs. These will filter a lot of unwanted loud noises. For those people whose work demands use of earphones, there are many headphones available that protect your ear from very loud noise.
Many people think that cotton swabs are one of the best ways to clean the ears and protecting them. Well they are not entirely right as cotton swabs may end up harming your ears. They may unintentionally push the dirt deeper to into the ear and even cause the eardrum to puncture.
Remember that the eardrum is the wall in between the outer ear and middle ear. When dirt or wastes get accumulated in the outer ear it gets cleaned by itself that is the way the ear works. The outer ear canal consists of protective hairs that routinely cleans and releases dirt from the ear canal. When a cotton swab is used it may scratch the surface of the ear canal which may disable this natural mechanism and also increase the chances of ear infection. If you feel that your ear needs any sort of check up or cleaning, it is better to go to an ear specialist as he will properly check your ear and suggest safe cleaning options.
Many people have a habit of piercing various parts of the body including the ears. If not done properly it can lead to serious infection of the pinna (visible outer ear) known as auricular perichondritis. It is characterized by the inflammation of the perichondrium (connective tissue surrounding the cartilage). If you find that your ear has turned red or if there is visible swelling and tenderness, remove the earring immediately and go to your physician to check if a infection is present.
A lot of people face issues where they suddenly cannot hear in either one or both ears. If this happens then one should immediately go to the doctor and check if any kind of infection has happened. Hear loss can also happen because of reduction in blood supply to the ear. These problems can cause lasting damage to the ear. Do not postpone any visits to the doctor that are related to hearing issues. Sometimes the pain might lessen or the hearing may return, do not hold back on checking your ear. In many cases high-dose steroids might be the only treatment for the hearing to return but these have to be given immediately. So it is better to make an appointment with the doctor as soon as you face any hearing issues.
It is true that eardrops are helpful in many cases of ear infection, but they can cause harm too. The damage usually is caused when they is a perforation in the ear drum. These may be caused by an infection and you may not know about it. Therefore it is better to get yourself checked out if you have any pain in your ear and not just start using eardrops as it may lead to permanent hear loss.
Your favorite underwater sport could also cause injury to the ear. Sudden pressure changes from activities like scuba diving and free-diving may lead to barotrauma; this could cause rupturing of the eardrum. The general rule of scuba diving is ascending at a rate of 30 feet per nine meters Barotrauma can also be caused when a person is diving while suffering from upper respiratory infection.
Many people enjoy an occasional wrestling match. While this being a good type of physical activity also has its disadvantages. The major one being a condition of the ear known as auricular hematoma also called as cauliflower ear. This happens when the ear suffers a blow which leads to accumulation of blood in the perichondrium. If treatment is done quickly then auricular hematoma can be avoided. To protect the ear from trauma you should wear an earguard that safeguards the ear from outer damage.