What To Do To Improve Hearing: Lifestyle and Nutrition Tips

Whether it’s listening to your favorite song or participating in a dynamic conversation with a group of people, being able to hear well is a central part of life. After the age of 65, one in three people experiences at least some hearing loss, which brings up the critical question of what can improve hearing in older adults. Healthy habits, thoughtful lifestyle choices, and good nutrition and supplementation can help you protect your hearing as you get older.

An elderly man gets his ears checked to help improve her hearing health.

How To Improve Hearing in Old Age With Healthy Lifestyle Habits

It’s never too early to practice ear-healthy behaviors. Some habits and lifestyle choices can have serious impacts on your hearing. Here are the most effective things you can do to ensure that you don’t unknowingly speed up hearing loss.

Wear Earplugs

Earplugs are essential for people working in loud environments. If you are exposed to loud noises on a regular basis, it can damage your hearing. Protect your ears by wearing effective earplugs at concerts, around power tools, when mowing the lawn, and anywhere else you are likely to hear high-volume sounds.

Stop Smoking

Smoking can lead to hearing loss, so it’s important to quit today. Even secondhand smoke can negatively impact hearing, so try to avoid it as much as possible. Cigarette smoke can cause blockages within the eustachian tube, leading to hearing loss. Cutting out all exposure to smoke is one of the easiest things you can do to improve hearing.

Exercise Regularly

Exercise is essential for overall well-being, and it can help boost your hearing health as well. Regular light exercise can improve cardiovascular health, which can protect against age-related hearing loss. Don’t go overboard with exercising since excessive physical activity can increase inflammation throughout your body, including in your ears.

Keep External Noise Levels Down

It’s important to keep the volume at an appropriate level when you listen to the television and radio. Exposure to excessive noise is a common cause of hearing loss and impairment, so don’t turn up the sound beyond the midway point. Keep this in mind for when you’re at home, in your car, or wearing headphones.

Schedule Regular Hearing Tests

Doctors know that what improves hearing is having regular check-ups. If you notice anything out of the ordinary happening with your ears, talk to your primary care physician about it and get a hearing test.

Don’t wait until the problem gets worse. Getting tested early can help reveal any changes in your hearing, and then your doctor can give you advice and recommendations to slow down or avoid hearing loss. You and your doctor may decide that hearing aids are necessary to help you hear better, and getting fitted for them early on can help you avoid cognitive hearing loss.

Follow the Directions on Medication

Many common medications, both over-the-counter and prescriptions, can induce hearing loss. Some steroids, NSAIDs, chemotherapy drugs, and even beta blockers can cause this issue, especially if taken for a long time or in large amounts. 

Always follow the directions for how much of a specific medication you are supposed to take and for how long. Never continue a medication for longer than is necessary. Talk about your concerns with your doctor to learn about the risks and how you can avoid them.

An elderly woman gets hearing aids to help improve her hearing.

What To Do To Improve Hearing With Nutrition and Supplements

Your diet can impact how well you hear, especially as you age. It’s fairly simple to identify what foods improve hearing because they are the same foods that support your overall health. With proper nutrition and the use of effective supplements, you can give your body everything it needs to thrive.

Foods That Improve Hearing

Some foods can lower your risk of hearing loss. The list of foods that improve hearing includes:

  • Legumes (peas, lentils, beans)
  • Fish
  • Broccoli
  • Bananas
  • Garlic
  • Whole grains
  • Dark chocolate

These foods contain nutrients that can help you improve hearing in old age. Antioxidants, fiber, and omega-3 oils can help strengthen the bones inside your ears, prevent abnormal bone growth that can lead to hearing loss, and provide your body with vitamins and minerals that minimize your risk of developing hearing-related diseases.

If you feel overwhelmed when you go to the grocery store, remember that the easiest way to get the nutrition you need is by eating whole foods. Avoid the processed foods section of the supermarket and opt for fresh fruits and vegetables, lean meats, healthy fats such as olive oil, and whole grains.

Supplements for Hearing Health

If you’re concerned about your hearing, you can explore using dedicated supplements and the best vitamins for inner ear health. If you don’t take these supplements already, you can look for them at your local health store: 

  • B vitamins
  • Magnesium
  • Zinc
  • Vitamins A, C, and E
  • Omega-3 fatty acids

Magnesium and potassium are important for keeping your hearing processes healthy. Magnesium supports the health of cells in the inner ear and can minimize high blood pressure associated with hearing loss. Potassium is involved in fluid balance and can help keep the hair cells in the inner ear healthy. Antioxidants such as vitamins C and E are crucial for fighting free radicals in the body and supporting the body’s immune response, and omega-3 fatty acids support brain health.

Before you start on a new regimen of supplements, talk to your doctor about what you want to take. If you’re taking prescription medications, be sure that there are no contraindications with the supplements that are on your list.

Healthcare Professionals Who Know What Is Good for Hearing

Whether you’re already experiencing some hearing loss or you want to avoid it, embracing healthy lifestyle habits will bring many benefits. If you or someone you care for are looking for community support and healthcare guidance, consider joining a senior living community where you can interact with professionals who know what is good for hearing and your overall well-being. Schedule a visit today to discover a community of like-minded older adults who are investing in the future by living fully in the present.

For help or more information contact us or schedule a visit at a location today.