Have you noticed that you’re asking others to repeat themselves more, or that you’re turning up the television volume higher than you used to? You’re not the only one. Hearing loss is a common, but frustrating fact of life.
If you’re not ready for a hearing aid, you might be wondering if you can improve your hearing naturally. The good news is that there are a few things you can implement to help you hear better. In this article, we’ll cover why diet, exercise, and even meditation can help you improve your hearing.
Improve Your Hearing Through Diet
Certain foods can help you improve your general health as well as your hearing health. Some of these are nuts and seeds, whole grains, and cold-water fish (like cod, salmon, and tuna).
Fruits and vegetables are packed full of nutrients and vitamins. These can be amazing for your hearing. Some of these, like blueberries, are full of antioxidants. Antioxidants help to counteract oxygen radicals that grow and spread through the body.
Oxygen radicals are damaging and can affect the ears, so any foods high in antioxidants are good to add to your diet.
You can also take vitamins and supplements to improve your hearing. B vitamins offer many benefits for your ears, such as stabilizing fluid levels and making blood cells that carry oxygen. Vitamin B9 (folic acid) encourages cells that manage hearing to produce energy, as well as supporting blood circulation around the ears.
Magnesium helps to stop the inside lining of your arteries from breaking down. It also helps support the nerves in your auditory system. Zinc can help your hearing by defending the hair cells inside your ear. These cells manage the vibrations that send electric signals to the brain. Zinc helps your body’s immune system, which can stop ear infections from occurring.
Improve Your Hearing Through Exercise
Physical exercise is good for your cardiovascular system, but it’s also great for keeping your ears healthy. Just a simple daily walk can help your blood circulate through your body, which can improve how your ears work.
Any exercise that gets your heart rate up will do. You can walk, run, or try a skipping rope. It can even be as simple as gardening or housework, which has the bonus of keeping your home tidy!
You can try more relaxed exercises too. Like cardio exercise, yoga poses can help your blood circulation, which is good for your hearing. Try poses like cobra pose, tree pose, lotus, or triangle.
These stretch your shoulders and spine, letting your blood circulate throughout your body. You don’t have to be a master of yoga. As long as you practice a few poses regularly, your ears will become healthier.
Improve Your Hearing Mentally
Mental exercises and focusing can help your hearing, particularly when you age. Mental exercises use the brain, which keeps it active and working healthily.
This will keep the part of your brain responsible for hearing in good condition. The brain then finds it easier to process what you hear, which can also reduce the likelihood of dementia occurring.
Some mental exercises to try are puzzles, like crosswords and word searches. Studies have shown that hearing loss and poor mental health are linked. Puzzles can help those with depression, as well as improve anxiety levels. Overall, this can protect against hearing loss associated with negative mental conditions.
Can You Improve Your Hearing With Meditation?
Some may turn their nose up at it, but meditation has been proven to be good for you. Research has shown that meditation can improve blood circulation and oxygen intake. These are both good for the brain and the ears, which in turn, can help improve your hearing.
Through meditation, you concentrate on the sounds around you, which is a way of practicing focus. This can help improve how your brain processes hearing, as well as general brain health. You can do this by closing your eyes and focusing on sounds in your environment.
Try to locate where the sounds are coming from, or repeating conversations that you hear on the television. Repeating sounds activates the oral parts of your brain, which also helps you hear better.
Improve Your Hearing With Ear Exercises
Your hearing isn’t just reliant on your ears, your brain is important too. Your ears hear sounds, but your brain makes sense of them. Some exercises can make your brain understand themes better, which can improve your hearing and listening skills.
Ask someone to read some sentences from a book or magazine. Make sure that the text isn’t familiar. Try to remember what was said, then repeat back the exact words from each line.
See if you improve over time. Once you get really good, you can attempt the exercise again with distractions in the background, like radio noise, or sitting in a loud cafe.
Take a notebook and pen, then set off for a walk in a natural environment. This could be the woods, a beach, or a park. Try to make sure that there’s no noise from traffic or heavy machinery.
Concentrate on the sounds happening around you. Write down all the things that you hear, like the breeze through the trees, or rain falling. Attempt this exercise for a few days, and see if you become more aware of different sounds around you.
Improve Your Hearing By Cleaning Your Ears
Most people don’t need to clean their ears, but if you’re suffering from mild hearing loss, this can be due to a buildup of earwax. No matter what, never use a cotton swab to remove it, as these can damage your ears.
To remove excess earwax, you’ll want to soften the wax so it’s easier to get rid of. The safest way to do this is with warm olive oil or saltwater. Make a solution of either liquid.
Turn your ear up towards the sky, then place a few drops into your ear. Keep your ear turned up so the mixture has time to loosen the wax. After a few minutes, turn your ear back down so the liquid drains out.
If you have larger buildups of wax, you can do this method more frequently. It’s the best way to remove dust and dirt from your ears, which could be causing your hearing loss.
Even if you do have more earwax than normal, don’t use a cotton swab. Cotton swabs can damage the lining of the ear canal, and can push wax further towards the eardrum. This will cause more hearing loss, which in some cases, can’t be cured.