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How to Prevent Hearing Loss

If you think you might be at risk for hearing loss, try following these four tips to help prevent the problem before it starts.

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Cut Down on Salt

Reducing your salt intake may help improve hearing.  Salt causes the body to retain fluid, which may swell the functional organs of the ear. Canned soups and other processed foods often contain large amounts of salt, so read labels.

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Visit Your Doctor

If you suspect hearing loss or your loved ones have hinted at it, schedule a checkup with an otolaryngologist, a doctor who specializes in diseases of the ears, nose and throat. If you are over age 65, you may want to have an audiologist test your hearing every 3 years–or every 6 to 12 months if you have a family history of hearing loss.

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Start Using Ginkgo

By improving blood flow to the brain and the ears, this herb may help ringing in the ears (tinnitus), though noticeable benefits may take weeks or months of use. Some studies suggest ginkgo may be useful in treating some types of hearing loss. Take up to 240mg of the extract a day, but check with your doctor first, since ginkgo can interact with other drugs.

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Avoid Excessive Noise

Try to avoid situations that expose you to loud noise. If that’s not possible, wear earplugs or ear protectors when shooting a gun or using lawn mowers, other noisy garden equipment, or power carpentry tools.