Do headphones affect hearing?
Headphones and earbuds are modern technology gadgets that put on the ears to play and listen to music. These things if used for more than moderate duration and volume can cause hearing problems and severe ear damage for life.
So let’s take a discussion about the ways to prevent hearing loss while using headphones.
How dangerous are headphones for your hearing?
If we use the headphones or earbuds for more than 1 hour time and more than 60-65% volume they can damage ear hearing.
In the beginning, damage can be minor but regular uses can put our ears in real danger of permanent hearing loss.
Hearing loss from earbuds is an example of a condition called noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL) and this kind of hearing loss is becoming more of a problem among kids and teens.
The main cause of damaging the hearing is the noise of headphones that produce very loud levels of sound close to our ear and especially if they are over 85db(decibels) and listening to over a 1 hour time.
When sound waves reach our ears, vibration occurs in the eardrum and then vibration is transmitted to the inner ear by several small bones, where it reaches the cochlea.
The cochlea is a fluid-filled chamber in the ear that contains many thousands of small “hairs”.when the sound vibrations reach the cochlea, the fluid inside it vibrates and causes the hairs to move. Louder sounds cause stronger vibrations, which causes the hairs to move more.
When we listen to sounds that are too loud for long, these hair cells lose their sensitivity to vibration. This is the reason of temporary hearing loss.
What is the sign of hearing loss?
The type of Hearing loss due to headphone use is typically gradual, and without obvious warning signs. These are the following symptoms:
- Ringing, roaring or buzzing in the ear.
- Difficulty understanding speech in noisy places.
- Listening to the TV or radio at a louder volume than in the past.
- Muffling or distortion of sounds.
4 ways to prevent hearing loss while using headphones
Avoiding headphones-induced hearing damage isn’t too hard. It simply requires people to buy good quality headphones and break some habits with their headphone use. And some of them are :
1. Turn down the volume
The best chance to protect your hearing is to turn down the volume on your devices. Because the primarily cause is exposure to very loud noise. Limiting your exposure can protect your ears. Don’t listen to any music or sound over 85db.
2. Use Noise-Canceling Headphones
Another good way to lower the volume and protect your ears is to use noise-cancelling headphones. These headphones block out the external sound of the surrounding, letting us enjoy the music or videos at a lower volume without distraction.
3. Use Over-The-Ear Models
Every audiologist and Otologist recommend using over-the-ear headphones instead of in-ear or earbud-style models. Over-the-ear headphones put more distance between your eardrums and the speakers than the earbuds.
4. Limit your exposure
Another way is using the “60-60 rule” Don’t listen at any louder than 60% of maximum volume for any longer than 60 minutes at a time.
The only treatment of hearing loss is getting hearing aids and implants from a licensed Audiologist and Otologists. These hearing aids can restore hearing ability and make it easy for you to hear again.
5. Use Bone conduction headphone
The use of bone conduction has greatly impacted those who are suffering from hearing loss and the medical profession dealing with its treatment. You can learn more about this in this article – how does bone conduction headphones help the deaf person.
That’s all in the article. We hope you found it useful.