Everyone likes privacy when listening to something, especially their family members. As listening devices began to switch from earmuff-style headphones to earbuds, it seemed that music and podcast fans of any age had found their solution. Over time, however, you might notice something happening to you or your child’s ear, but there are ways to get back into the groove.
Problem: Earbuds can lead to ear infections
Anytime you put something in your ear, you run the risk of infection. Dirt, debris, and foreign objects can enter your ear canal, and coupled with a cut or scrape in your ear can lead to a quick infection. This is especially true with earbuds given how often they’re left out in the open exposed to the elements and their tough plastic material.
Solution: Clean your earbuds and the storage case frequently
Problem: Earbuds can create wax buildup
The wonderful thing about ears is that they are self-cleaning. However, that process can be affected when the ear canal is covered for multiple hours in a day through items like earbuds. This prevents wax and moisture from escaping, leading to increased wax buildup that causes muffled hearing and further infections. So, when your child seems like they aren’t listening, they really might not be able to because of their earbuds.
Dr. Nicholas Stowell, ENT specialist at CEENTA’s Concord location, has sound advice for those who are looking to prevent ear infections. “Make sure to give your ears a rest from earbuds, take them out every few hours and leave them out for at least 15 minutes to allow your ear canals to ‘breathe’.”
Solution: Reduce your daily usage of earbuds
Problem: Earbuds can irritate the skin
Any ear pain you get from earbuds can come from more than just infections. In fact, it could be a matter of the material and shape itself. Not factoring in the size and shape of your ears could create issues when trying to insert the device, leading to cuts, scrapes, or pressure on the canal and outer ear.
Solution: Properly size your earbuds with removable covers
Problem: Earbuds can build to hearing issues
While there is convenience in having something small to listen through, many people do not consider how loud the volume can get. Kids especially love to crank the volume up and don’t consider the long-term effects. Listening at high volumes – especially consistently – can lead to tinnitus, muffled hearing, or eventual hearing loss.
Solution: Lower your volume when using the earbuds consistently
Ear pain can take you out of your favorite song, but CEENTA can bring you right back to rhythm. Their ENT specialists in Concord can diagnose and determine what’s causing your ear infection, while their audiologists can make sure that your hearing is clear to the last note. Schedule an appointment today for CEENTA’s Concord office and hear the difference.
This blog is for informational purposes only. For specific medical questions, please consult your doctor. New patients can make appointments online with any of our ENT doctors in North and South Carolina. Current patients can also make appointments through myCEENTAchart with physicians they have already seen.