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How Headphones Damage Hearing-Prevent Hearing Loss

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How Headphones Damage Hearing

Music is like a part of our lives. Without a question, technology has improved our quality of life and convenience in many ways, but excessive and careless usage has also increased the prevalence of health problems. The usage of headphones is one facet of technology that is giving rise to increased alarm. Headphones, earphones, or earbuds have become an important thing in our lives. And people use these products more than their actual use.

We use earphones while traveling, eating, reading, and sleeping as well. Excess to anything can be dangerous. These headphones can damage the hearing and using them a lot can cause serious issues like migraine, headaches, and restlessness.

According to the researchers, high volume and sharp music can cause hearing damage. The National Institutes of Health (NIH)Trusted Source recommends a public health limit of 70 decibels of average recreational noise exposure per day. Children, teenagers, and young adults may be especially at risk if they often listen to several hours of music per day at volumes over this limit.

WHO Message

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), exposure to loud noise puts approximately 1.1 billion young individuals at risk of hearing loss that might change their quality of life. While there are several risk factors, including as loud music at pubs, clubs, and concerts, the highest danger is listening to ear-piercing music through headphones. According to the WHO, although younger people under 35 are more likely to use earbuds to listen to music, 50% of them are using them to listen to loud music.

To prevent temporary hearing loss or permanent hearing loss in the near future, it is essential to use earbuds responsibly.

How hearing louder can be dangerous?


In order to know how headphones damage hearing there are a few facts given below:

The cells in the ear might become damaged by loud music played through headphones. The fact that these cells can’t renew is the biggest worry. Once the damage has been done, it cannot be undone, which can result in irreversible hearing loss.

The hearing bones help sound travel to the inner ear through the eardrum. The cochlea, which is made up of multiple tiny “hairs” and is filled with a fluid, is the next location where the vibration travels. The fluid vibrates when the vibration reaches the cochlea, which causes the hairs to move. The vibrations are greater and the hairs move more when the noise is louder. The hair cells eventually lose their sensitivity to sound vibration when exposed over time to loud music. Sometimes the loud music also causes the hair cells to bend or fold over, which causes a momentary loss of hearing.

The hearing cells in the ear may get destroyed if the sound is played for an extended period of time at a high volume. Additionally, the earbuds might force earwax into the ear canal, which could lead to infections.

Reduce the risks of hearing damage

There is nothing above health, we cannot risk our abilities and health just for some fun and ease. Hearing loss is a loss for a lifetime, there is no medication for that you end up putting and attaching some ear instruments to your ears when you lose the hearing ability. There are some of the factors by which you can reduce the risk of damaging your ears.


Volume should be low

When we come to the statement that how headphones damage hearing, the first thing which comes in our mind is high volume. High volume can damage hearing more than usual. There is some scale limit of human ear hearing, when we exceed that then the hearing issue starts. Sounds above 85- 90dB can damage the hearing ability of the human ear. Although it might be challenging to gauge a device’s decibel output, the best course of action is to maintain the level at 50% and reduce the listening duration to prevent ear damage.

Use Good Quality headphones

Earbuds are the new technology and headphones are being used for a long ago. Earbuds and earphones settle in your ear and leave no space. These are simply in the mouth of your ear canal and headphones have some differences from the ear canals. That’s why headphones have less damage than earbuds. So, if you want to use earbuds, use them with low volume.


Take Pauses

As I have mentioned earlier excess of anything can be dangerous, so if you want to use any technology use it like a hobby, not like your need or routine.

Long-term usage of earbuds while listening to loud music can permanently harm the ears. It is thus always recommended to take intervals in between to relieve pressure on the ears. Consider taking a five- or ten-minute break every thirty or sixty minutes.

Recognize the symptoms of hearing loss

According to doctors, the most typical early warning symptoms of hearing loss are difficulties hearing in noisy settings and the impression that you can hear people but not understand what they are saying.

They said that tinnitus, often known as ringing in the ears, is frequently a precursor to hearing loss and a symptom of damage to the auditory system.

Regularly check your hearing

Doctors advise getting your hearing examined once a year if you’re over 50 or are frequently exposed to loud noise. Get your hearing checked can help you to take medication of treatment before the problem.


How Headphones Damage Hearing-FAQ’s

What’s the impact of headphones on hearing?
If you use over-the-ear headphones for an extended period of time or listen to loud music, you might end up damaging your hearing. They simply pose less of a risk than earphones do: The level of a sound can be increased by 6 to 9 decibels when the source is in your ear canal, which can result in some major issues.

How loud must headphones be for harm to hearing to occur?
For comparison, prolonged exposure to sounds louder than 85 dB (equivalent to a lawnmower or leaf blower) might potentially harm the ears, whereas five minutes of exposure to sounds between 105 and 110 dB can result in ear damage.

What happens if we overuse earbuds?
When used for an extended length of time at a loud volume, earphones can harm the ears and cause noise-induced hearing loss, which can range from partial to total hearing loss. Since the sound from earbuds causes the hair cells in the cochlea to bend excessively, the damage might be irreversible.

How long should headphones be worn?
According to Dr. Foy, you should limit your usage of MP3 players to 60 percent of their maximum volume for a total of 60 minutes per day. “Your duration should be shortened the louder the noise. You should only listen at full volume for around five minutes every day.

What volume on headphones is safe?
Experts advise limiting sound levels to between 60 and 85 decibels to lessen the harm that is done to your hearing. Limit your use to no more than 15 minutes if you are listening to music at about 100 decibels.

What earbud volume is excessive?
Even though it might seem apparent, there is one definite approach to safeguard yourself against negative consequences if the level on your headphones is too high. You definitely shouldn’t listen to audio that is louder than 85 decibels for more than 15 minutes at a time, as we have mentioned. Additionally, you shouldn’t listen for more than an hour straight at 80 dB.

Does using headphones harm the brain?
According to studies, noise levels over 110 decibels cause damage to the nerve cells’ protective insulating myelin layer, which carries impulses from the ear to the brain. Myelin, a protective layer that is lost when nerve impulses are disrupted, can lead to partial or total deafness.

Is daily usage of headphones acceptable?
In-ear device use under normal circumstances seldom results in issues. However, using earphones for an extended period of time, such if you wear them all day, may: compress the earwax, making it less fluid and more difficult for the body to properly eliminate. compress the earwax to the point that the body starts to inflame.

Can earbuds clog your ears?
Earphones transmit germs and debris to your ears directly. You might get an allergic reaction, a rash, or an infection. If you wear earbuds often, a build-up of ear wax is also possible since they prevent the wax from normally exiting the ear canals and can result in a wax blockage.

How loud is too noisy?
A motorbike engine operating is roughly 95 dB louder than regular conversation, which is around 60 dB louder than a whisper. Your hearing may begin to be harmed if exposed to noise exceeding 70 dB for an extended length of time. Your ears might suffer instant damage from loud noise exceeding 120 dB.

Is hearing loss irreversible?
Hearing loss may occasionally be temporary. However, if important ear structures are irreparably harmed, it can become permanent. Any injury to the ear might cause hearing loss. The inner ear is highly sensitive to loud sounds (cochlea).

Can hearing loss be avoided?
Most of the time, hearing loss cannot be stopped. It is impossible to stop hearing loss brought on by ageing (the main cause), illness, genetics, trauma, or biology. The second most common cause of hearing loss, noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL), may be avoided.

Can headphones really be that loud?
A safe volume is between 50 and 60 percent of the maximum volume because headphones and earbuds can be as loud as 100 dB or higher. We can enjoy our favorite music for longer while also helping to safeguard our hearing.

Can headphones hurt your ears?
The pinna, the outside portion of your ear, can become damaged by pressure from headphones that are worn over or around the ear. You run the danger of inflicting discomfort and skin abrasion by bending or compressing the sensitive pinna cartilage while wearing headphones.

Why should we stay away from headphones?
Now, using standard headphones while listening to music at a loud volume exceeding 85 dB might harm the delicate inner ear structure and result in noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL), a hearing impairment brought on by loud sound.

How Headphones Damage Hearing-Conclusion

The above article has mentioned all the factors which affect hearing. Health is above anything. You must have listened to the quote that “HEALTH IS WEALTH” so if you are concerned about yourself, you must take all the precautionary measures and take care of your ears.

You must see the doctor if you face any issues or facing several problems like insomnia or migraine. These are the main factors that influence the damage. So, if you want to know, how headphones damage hearing looks for every point mentioned above. And have a happy listening!

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