Diana Callesano, Au.D.
The Fourth of July is upon us yet again. This holiday is marked by summer fun, backyard barbecues and spectacular firework displays. We all look forward to the evening when we can watch in awe as this colorful array of explosions light up the sky. The excitement is intensified by the loud booms and sizzling made by these pyrotechnics. But while they are beautiful to watch, fireworks can put your hearing at serious risk!
Whether you are in charge of the light show or simply an amazed spectator, consider the following 3 ways to protect your ears during this Independence Day.
Use Hearing Protection
Earplugs or earmuffs are the best way to protect your ears from loud noise. Whether they are foam or custom made, earplugs will reduce the volume and minimize the risk of noise exposure. For children or those who cannot use earplugs, earmuffs are another safe alternative and can easily be placed over the ears. Young infants should not be exposed to fireworks at all as their tiny ear canals only enhance the loud sound and put them at greater risk of hearing damage.
Watch from a Distance
Unless you are responsible for lighting the fireworks, you should position yourself a safe distance away from the main attraction. Not only does this keep you safe from dangerous sparks but the further you are the less damaging the noise will be.
Choose the Professional Displays
Setting off your own fireworks is fun but try to seek out the professional displays. These events usually have sections for viewing at a safe distance away from the actual fireworks, putting distance between you and the noise. Contact your local parks or search for local fireworks displays in your town on the internet to find out where these events can be found.
Noise induced hearing loss can occur after only ONE loud event. If you suspect any changes in hearing or a sudden onset of ringing in your ears after this Fourth of July, contact us to schedule a hearing evaluation. Your ears will thank you!