There are many ways people lose levels of hearing loss abilities. One of the most common ways to experience hearing loss is by experiencing loud noises. Noise-induced hearing loss impacts the lives of millions of Americans daily.
According to the American Academy of Audiology, “Approximately 40 million American adults may have hearing loss resulting from noise exposure. Noise-induced hearing loss is caused by damage to the hair cells found in the inner ear. Hair cells are small sensory cells that convert the sounds we hear (sound energy) into electrical signals that travel to the brain. Once damaged, our hair cells cannot grow back, which results in permanent hearing loss.”
Work to Prevent Noise-Induced Hearing Loss
Once our hair cells located within the inner ear are damaged, they do not grow back. This makes hearing loss prevention vitally important. Hearing protection can help because it decreases the volume of noise and works to preserve our hearing abilities.
If you live in urban areas, environmental noise can be a constant, which may have an impact on your hearing abilities over long periods of time, but the more immediate issue are sounds that are loud and last longer periods of time and/or sudden, more intense sounds that last a short time. Examples of both situations can include concerts, machines in work environments, sirens and more.
How to Protect Your Hearing from Noise-Induced Hearing Loss
The louder the sound, the shorter the amount of time you can safely be around it. Sound are dangerous to your hearing abilities when:
- A person needs to shout over background noise to be heard
- The sound/noise causes a person to experience pain in the ears
- The sound/noise causes a “ringing” or “buzzing” in the ears with periods of immediate hearing loss
- A person experiences decreased hearing abilities or even “muffled” hearing following the loud sound/noise exposure
According to the American Academy of Audiology, “Noise-induced hearing loss can be caused by sudden or prolonged exposure to any sound over 85 dB. Sound loudness is measured in units called decibels (dB).”
There are many simple ways we can all work to prevent noise-induced hearing loss, such as wearing hearing protection when using or spending time around sound that register over 85 db.
|Sound Level||Examples of Sound Level|
|60 dB||Normal conversations, dishwashers|
|80 dB||Alarm clocks|
|90 dB||Hair dryers, blenders, lawnmowers|
|100 dB||MP3 players at full volume|
|110 dB||Concerts (any music genre), car racing, sporting events|
|120 dB||Jet planes at take off|
|130 dB||Ambulance, fire engine sirens, police sirens|
|140 dB||Gun shots, fireworks, custom car stereos at full volume|
Foam earplugs, earmuffs, and custom hearing protection devices can be very useful and helpful in avoiding long-term hearing damage. Another helpful way to reduce the changes of noise-induced hearing loss to is simply turn down the volume when listening to the radio, television, MP3 player, or anything through earbuds and headphones. This is especially true for children and young adults today.
We Can Help with Your Hearing Loss
Whatever you do to improve your hearing, make the investment to see an Audiologist. We will evaluate performance of your hearing devices and set you up with realistic expectations for your hearing in the future.
Physicians Hearing Solutions is committed to working together to bring the most quality hearing healthcare to our patients in order to achieve our overall goal of improving all our patients with an increased quality of life. To fulfill this mission, we are committed to earning the trust and respect of all of our patients, through providing professionalism; ensuring a creative, challenging, and compassionate professional environment; exceeding your expectations; listening to those we are privileged to serve; and always striving for continuous improvement at all levels. Give us a call today to schedule your free hearing screening at (401) 921-0181.
Check out some of our previous hearing loss related posts for more information: