While technology has helped us in so many areas, it may be putting our health at risk. Specifically, technology may be having a serious impact on our hearing.
How Noise Harms Hearing
Loud noises can damage your hearing. Known as noise-induced hearing loss, this occurs when sounds that are too loud damage the delicate hairs within your inner ear. Sounds are measured in decibels. Anything over 85 dB can cause damage.
Loud Noises and Technology
As technology becomes more integrated into our lives, so does the increase in hearing loss.
One of the major culprits is the use of headphones. Louder and higher-quality headphones deliver noise directly into your ears. Many listen to music in order to drown out the sounds of their surroundings, requiring their music to be even louder.
According to the World Health Organization, almost one billion young people worldwide could be at risk of hearing loss due to unsafe listening practices. Of those between the ages of 12-35, nearly 50 percent are exposed to unsafe levels of sound from the use of personal audio devices.
It is not just music that people are listening to at loud enough volumes to damage their hearing. Movies, television shows, podcasts and even YouTube videos can be streamed directly from your cellphone into your headphones.
Technology at Work
Our workplaces are also changing. What used to be filled with offices and cubicles is now an open concept environment with minimal furniture. This lack of walls and fabric means sounds are not absorbed, instead they bounce around and intensify.
In addition to the aesthetic changes, how we work is different. Online meetings, webinars, virtual trainings and even video calling is all part of our normal day-to-day. The volume is often hard to control, especially if you are not the only one sitting in on a training.
Protect Your Hearing
Now more than ever it is important to protect your hearing. Pay close attention to your volume, making sure to turn down your device to the lowest level you can still hear.
If you think you may have developed hearing loss caused by exposure to noise, your audiologist can help. Contact the experts at ENT of Athens today to get started.