Prevention is better than the cure, as the old saying goes, and that's certainly the case when it comes to your hearing.
While modern hearing aids are often easy to use and well-fitting, it's clearly a much better idea to look after your hearing and ensure that you don't actually need to wear them at all further down the line.
We are all faced with noise every day, from the moment we wake until we go to bed, whether it be recreational in the form of listening to an iPod or radio at full blast, or noise in your working environment.
In terms of the former, it's really the responsibility of the individual themselves to ensure they aren't listening to their music at dangerous levels.
When you consider that an MP3 player played loudly can create 112 decibels of noise, it's easy to see why so many bodies encourage the safe listening to of music.
If you must listen to it loudly for some reason, say if the environment itself is louder than normal, then ensure you don't do so for a sustained period of time.
If your ears are ringing afterwards then you have had it on too loud and this can often be a sign of tinnitus.
When it comes to work environments, there is a lot more legal responsibility on employers, although workers themselves still need to take some of the initiative.
Many noisy industries require employers to offer hearing protectors for their workers but it's always best to be pro-active and seek these out rather than waiting to receive them.
With increasingly stringent health and safety laws, hearing loss is now much less of a concern within professional environments, with recreational areas such as gigs and nightclubs more of a concern, especially among the younger generations.
No-one is saying you have to go through life in silence, it's just advisable to take care and reduce the damage done to your hearing from day to day.