Protect your ears, it's festival season!

Many of us have felt that our hearing is temporarily worse after a concert, but in most cases we do not attach too much importance to this. However, with this, we can risk the integrity of our ears. In addition, you don't even have to be a music fan to have hearing damage, many jobs can cause such a problem. We asked Dr. Csilla Miltényi, otolaryngologist and phoniatrician at the Duna Medical Center, about who and where are most at risk, whether damage can be reversed and what we can do to protect our ears.
Protect your ears, it's festival season!

What are the first signs?

The first signs of hearing loss are usually not noticed by the patient himself, but by family members and colleagues. The hearing-impaired regularly asks back, turns up the TV and radio, does not hear the doorbell, or family members and colleagues who speak more softly. In many cases, he still hears words well, but his understanding of speech decreases. Typically, patients begin to realize that their hearing is much worse when they are in background noise for a long time.

Who is most at risk?

Babies and children's hearing is the most vulnerable, and we must also pay special attention to elderly people with gradually deteriorating hearing. Since there is hereditary hearing loss, those who have had such complaints in their family should also be on the lookout, as well as those who have had one ear deaf since birth or due to an illness. Interestingly, men are more affected by hearing loss than women, more of them are affected.

However, workers in noisy workplaces are exposed to the greatest danger. These include road builders, airport staff, log cutters, motorcycle couriers, factory workers, rock musicians and nightclub workers, especially DJs and drummers. This also includes occupations where we would not even imagine how much noise impact we have to endure on a daily basis. Kindergarten teachers, hairdressers who use long-lasting, humming hair dryers, and people working in open office workplaces with a large number of employees work in such positions.

Even now, the use of noise-reducing headphones is not mandatory in several workplaces where it would be justified. The problem is compounded by the fact that even if protective equipment is provided in accordance with the rules at the workplace, it is still not used because it is a bit uncomfortable, it makes you hot, or the workers there think it is pointless. However, it is better if we realize that without protection, we can say goodbye to our hearing very quickly.

Is there any damage that can be reversed?

In the case of conductive hearing loss, the external auditory canal may be blocked, for example by earwax, or the eardrum may be perforated or damaged. It can also be caused by the enlargement of the tonsils or otitis media, when an obstruction is formed in the area of the auditory ossicles, which temporarily obstructs the conduction of sound. These problems can be corrected with careful, professional medical intervention.

There is also a sudden loss of hearing, in which case an urgent medical intervention within 24-48 hours can be successful, but beyond that, the possibility of recovery becomes uncertain. Dr. Csilla Miltényi emphasizes that acute hearing loss can be caused by a stroke, which is why it is important to see a doctor immediately if you experience these symptoms.

What can we do to protect our ears?

This is a very valid question at the start of the festival season. We should refrain from using headphones and earphones for a long time, and from participating in loud concerts. When listening to music, it is recommended to use headphones that are semi-closed or equipped with noise reduction or noise isolation, and at concerts do not go too close to the speakers. As a result of loud music, damage to the hair cells in the inner ear can be irreversible, which can result in persistent tinnitus that is difficult to influence.

We must pay special attention to children, as their hearing is the most vulnerable. Parents often unwittingly expose them to loud noise, which can result in permanent hearing loss even at a young age. Of course, you shouldn't filter out every little noise, but you should gradually get used to using hearing protection, earplugs or headphones. Modern devices are available that do not hinder children in any activity, are comfortable to wear and are friendly in color and shape. Remember that earphones are a personal item, only used by one person! After an ear disease, the safest thing to do is to replace the old device, said Dr. Csilla Miltényi.

Make an appointment for our otolaryngology specialist examinations by phone at +36 1 790 7070 or online!

Get to know our otolaryngologists:

Dr. Magdolna Bánki

Dr. Beáta Bencsik

Dr. Zoltán Fent

Dr. Frigyes Helfferich

Dr. Tatjána Majoros

Dr. Krisztina Mészáros

Dr. Csilla Miltényi

Dr. György Szalai

Dr. Miklós Tóth

Prof. Dr. Imre Gerlinger

Prof. Dr. Balázs Bendegúz Lőricz

Prof. Dr. László Tamás