With cooler, shorter days approaching, keeping your ears healthy may be low on your priority list. However, you can enjoy fall activities even more with healthy ears and hearing.

If you will be participating in loud, fun, fall activities such as hunting, leaf blowing or going to stadiums, be sure to protect your hearing.  Foam earplugs and earmuffs are great options to prevent noise-induced hearing loss and tinnitus. If you are interested in custom noise protection, contact your audiologist to discuss your options. Protecting your ears in these loud situations can also help reduce your risk for tinnitus or a temporary shift in hearing sensitivity.

Seasonal allergies can also affect how well you hear and how your ears feel. Hay fever is common in the fall months and can last from mid-August until a hard freeze. With lingering warm weather, rhinitis (stuffy and runny nose) can last longer and raking leave may make allergies every worse. Going back to school can expose kids to classroom irritants and trigger allergies as well.  These irritants can cause a buildup of fluid in the middle ear space and lead to temporary hearing loss or ear infections.  If you think there is fluid in the ear, schedule an appointment with your doctor.