It’s festival season! Time to enjoy a summer of live music in the great outdoors. Hearing aid manufacturer, Oticon, provides useful tips on how to protect your hearing now, to ensure you can continue to enjoy music for years to come
Most people do not consider that they need to protect their hearing from permanent damage during the festival season, however, listening to loud music, especially over a prolonged period of time, can lead to irreversible hearing damage such as tinnitus, hearing loss, or hypersensitive hearing, often unnoticeable until it is too late. Hearing aid manufacturer, Oticon, has created some top tips on how to protect your hearing this summer, as well as advice on when to seek help.
Protect your hearing while listening to loud music:
• Wear earplugs and be sure to fit them well for them to work
• Use ear defenders for kids (it can be hard to fit ear plugs properly in small ears)
• Keep a distance from loudspeakers
• Use an app to measure sound levels
“Each year, festivals and loud music damage many ears,” says Thomas Behrens, Vice President of Audiology, Oticon. “When music reaches a certain level, it can cause lasting damage to parts of the auditory system. There are likely many people who frequent concerts and festivals who have been affected by a hearing impairment, although some may not recognise their symptoms until much later. Oticon have recently reported that the early damage caused by loud noise exposure can be undetectable in normal hearing tests. This ‘Hidden Hearing Loss’ can go unnoticed, even by professionals, and so by the time a diagnosis is made, the body is unable to repair the damage caused and it can be very difficult to treat.”
Despite festivals having a maximum volume level, they are often exceeded, especially when you consider the noise created by the crowds in addition to the music. The louder the music, the shorter amount of time it takes before hearing damage occurs. The potential for hearing loss is very individual, so the time a person can be exposed to loud noise before it becomes damaging to their hearing can vary, but in general, sound levels this high can cause a degree of hearing loss in less than 5 minutes . It may even cause pain and permanent ear injury.
“After a festival, you may well experience ringing in the ears or that you don’t hear well. This is a natural reaction to too much music and loud noise levels. If you still experience these symptoms one day after the concert, we recommend you contact an ENT doctor or a hearing care specialist to discuss your concerns so they can act accordingly. Hearing loss caused by noise is the only type of hearing loss we can prevent, and we should therefore try to do something about it,” concludes Thomas Behrens.
500 million people worldwide suffer from hearing loss. The majority are over the age of 50 while eight percent are under the age of 18. Oticon‘s vision is to create a world where people are no longer limited by hearing loss. A world where hearing aids fit seamlessly into life and help people realise their full potential, while avoiding the health consequences of hearing loss. Oticon develops and manufactures hearing aids for both adults and children and supports every kind of hearing loss from mild to profound and Oticon pride themselves on developing some of the most innovative hearing aids in the market. Headquartered in Denmark, Oticon are a global company and part of Demant with more than 18,000 employees and revenues of around DKK 18 billion. Changing technology. Changing conventions. Changing lives. Oticon – Life-changing hearing technology.