Did you know that noise related hearing loss is usually irreversible? We think that most people don’t, or they would be doing something about it! Hearing protection is very important. Children’s hearing is more at risk than ever before with loud music players, noisy places and music concerts.
Hearing protection should always be at the forefront of your mind when taking a child to a noisy event. To put this into perspective, long exposure to sounds over 80 decibels (dB) can cause hearing loss that may leave a child with permanent damage or ringing in their ears. For your reference, here is a guide to typical noise levels measured in dB – the higher the number, the louder the noise:
60dB: ordinary spoken conversation
80dB: shouting – this is where the danger begins
100dB: watching a film at the cinema
110dB: a pneumatic drill nearby
130dB: an aeroplane taking off 100m away
We know that it is a scary thought that even a shouted conversation could permanently damage your child’s hearing, so we have put together some top tips for helping protect them. The easiest and most obvious way to protect their hearing is to ensure they wear ear defenders at loud events. This could be firework displays, music concerts or sporting events.
Another easy way to help them protect their hearing is to turn down their music players! If your child clearly can’t hear any external sound, it is too loud. You should also ensure that they are taking regular 10 minute breaks from listening to their headphones. Whilst on the subject of music, listening to music in the car for long periods of time can increase the risk of hearing damage so try to play more car games with your children and turn the radio off for a bit.
Always make sure that when your child is watching the television, they don’t have the volume turned up to a crazy level. If you are having to raise your voice over the TV, it is too loud and is probably causing some damage.
Whilst taking precautions for hearing protection is great, you should try to limit the time your children are spending in noisy environments. If you spend the least possible time in noisy places, you will be helping to protect their (and your!) hearing. We would always recommend taking your child to see an Audiologist if you have any worries at all about their hearing. If you would like any further advice, please do get in touch.