In this article, you will know how headphones or earbuds cause hearing loss and give you a step-by-step guideline on how to Prevent Hearing Loss from Headphones?
The ear is highly complicated, and so when sound comes through the ear, your outer ear kind of funnels it down. It hits your eardrum, and it goes through to the middle ear. Your brain takes that signal, and then it analyzes it, and that’s what you hear.
When everything works well, the message comes across lovely, loud, and clear. There are many different way stations along that pathway, which means that many other things can cause hearing loss. You should know What is the most common reason for hearing loss?
The two most common reasons for hearing loss are:
1. Age-related hearing loss: hearing decline related to just the natural aging process and noise-induced hearing loss.
2. Loud sound: The potential exists for you to damage your hearing because of that excess noise level.
Can headphones cause hearing loss?
Yes! Hearing loss is so high that why October is celebrated as National Protect Hearing Month (NPYHM) in the United States.
According to the center for disease control in the USA, one out of eight Americans in the age group of 6 to 19 years has already suffered permanent hearing damage due to excessive exposure to noise, and the figure is as high as 17 percent in adults that means one out of six.
You may be wondering what I will be forbidden to use headphones? Of course not. Headphones have become a necessity in the digital age. I will give you various tips to use headphones without damage. With these tips, your hearing loss can be much less.
How Does Noise Cause Hearing Loss?
Loud sounds can damage the microscopic hair cells in the inner ear. Due to too much noise, the hearing cell in the inner is destroyed. The inner ear is near to eardrum. So you can understand how sensitive it is.
The extent of damage to the hair cells is dependent upon three factors.
- The loudness of sound
- The duration of sound and
- How many times does the exposure occur
Can headphones make you deaf?
Loud music through headphones can make you deaf. We measure loudness in decibels. Generally, noise below 80 decibels is not causing hearing loss or deaf.
It Will does not cause damage to your hearing unless you listen to that noise for many hours of the day. Most headphones or earbuds can go much louder than 80 decibels.
The sound of the mixer grinder used at home is 85 decibels. 60% of the volume on most personal music devices is 75-80 decibels. The problem is that the total volume of the headphones is 110 decibels. Safe listening time decreases with increasing decibels.
- Hearing loss from sound is permanent and irreversible because the human inner ear hearing cell is not regenerated.
- It is cumulative with repeated exposure. It keeps on increasing over time.
- By the time we know about hearing loss, it’s too late.
- Noise exposure can also lead to tinnitus. Commonly described as a ringing in the ears.
Can earbuds cause tinnitus?
Loud music with headphones or earbuds can cause permanent hearing loss with the increasing use of headphones or earbuds for a long time. It can be a big problem in our society than we realize.
The ear has three parts
- Ear canal
- Eardrum and
- The cochlea
The hearing organ loud noise exposure can have permanent damage to the cochlea. When the cochlea is damaged, that creates a filtered signal up to the brain, and then the auditory brain can create this ringing sound.
We call that ringing in the ears tinnitus. Sometimes tinnitus is temporary and comes back to normal after a few days or weeks. Other times tinnitus is permanent.
How to prevent hearing loss from headphones?
The first thing that you can do to keep your hearing as healthy as possible is to stay away from excessive amounts of noise. You know some of the familiar noise sources tend to be loud, like music, heavy lawn equipment, gunfire. That’s not meaning to say you should never go to a concert or you shouldn’t listen to music. Music has a lot of other positive aspects on our health.
- Should be used Over-ear headphones instead of earphones and earbuds because earbuds and earphones are closer to the eardrum. As a result, the sound is about six to nine decibels louder. Earphones and earbuds do not block the outside sounds so well. So the users have a tendency to increase the volume.
- More people use earbuds because they are cheaper. If you want to use earbuds, make sure the ear tips are soft and not hard. The soft tips fit better and can block more of the outside sound.
- The best option is to use noise cancellation headphones if you can afford them. The noise cancellation headphones will prevent outside noise from coming in, and you will be able to enjoy your music at a lower volume.
- Take steps to get the best stereo effects from your device and headphones. You need to set the best stereo effect on your device so that you can listen to music at a low volume.
- If your headphones are marked right and left, then you must use right and left ear headphones in the correct ear.
- Go to the settings of your music app and select the best quality that your internet connection can support; alternatively, you can download the best quality music and listen offline.
- Use your music app’s equalizer settings to adjust the frequencies to get the best sound effects per your liking without increasing the volume.
- Set the headphones sound while using the headphones should be such that no one else can hear, and you have an awareness of the sounds in your surroundings.
- How long is it safe to listen to music through headphones in one sitting? I recommend following the 60/60 rules. This means the sound of your headphones will not be more than 60% and will not listen for more than 60 minutes throughout the day.
- If your device can set a limit for volume, then go into the settings and set up the maximum volume limit at a safe level. Try not to use the headphones when you are alone; instead, use the external speakers.
- This tip is essential for parents with small children. Sleeping with the headphones on is very risky. You can use the timer app to switch off the audio. This function is available in the clock app of iPhone and iPad. Android users can download a timer app from the play store.
- Some popular media apps like VLC allow raising a volume to 200, so please be very careful while using these apps.