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Recommended article: Hidden Hearing Loss from Everyday Noise


Hiro

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Hidden Hearing Loss from Everyday Noise - Scientific American

 

Turns out that the popular audiogram is a flawed test that doesn't tell the whole story, in particular with regards to our ears losing the ability to discriminate complex sounds (read: loss of resolution) caused by damaged fibers in auditory nerve.

 

From the article:

 

"Put in its simplest terms, the audiogram, the gold standard test of hearing, measures auditory thresholds and is a sensitive gauge of cochlear hair cell damage. Yet it is a very poor indicator of damage to auditory nerve fibers. Our research has shown that the nerve damage of hidden hearing loss does not affect the ability to detect the presence of sound, but it most likely degrades our ability to understand speech and other complex sounds.

 

[...]

 

Audiologists have long known that two people with similar audiograms can perform very differently on so-called speech-in-noise tests, which measure the numbers of words correctly identified as the level of a background noise increases."

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Look up Sensorineural Hearing Loss, Types, Causes and Treatment | Hearing Loss Association of America

 

Also it is known that taking antibiotics can lead to hearing loss ad other things.. Medicines That Cause Hearing Loss-Topic Overview

 

Thanks for the Hearing Loss Association link, a good overview of causes of hearing loss. Too bad, the current safety standards for allowed exposures to noise are flawed. See the below quote from the Scientific American article:

 

"Our research raises questions about the risks of routine exposure to loud music at concerts and clubs and via personal listening devices. Although noise-induced hearing loss is clearly a problem among professional musicians, even those playing classical music, epidemiological studies of casual listeners have consistently failed to find substantial impact on their audiograms. The federal guidelines developed to minimize noise damage in the U.S. workforce are all based on the presumption that if postexposure thresholds return to normal, the ear has fully recovered. As we have learned, this assumption is wrong; thus, it naturally follows that present noise regulations may be inadequate to prevent widespread noise-induced nerve damage and the hearing impairment that it causes."

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Thanks for the Hearing Loss Association link, a good overview of causes of hearing loss. Too bad, the current safety standards for allowed exposures to noise are flawed. See the below quote from the Scientific American article:

 

"Our research raises questions about the risks of routine exposure to loud music at concerts and clubs and via personal listening devices. Although noise-induced hearing loss is clearly a problem among professional musicians, even those playing classical music, epidemiological studies of casual listeners have consistently failed to find substantial impact on their audiograms. The federal guidelines developed to minimize noise damage in the U.S. workforce are all based on the presumption that if postexposure thresholds return to normal, the ear has fully recovered. As we have learned, this assumption is wrong; thus, it naturally follows that present noise regulations may be inadequate to prevent widespread noise-induced nerve damage and the hearing impairment that it causes."

 

In my youth, I played in local rock bands in Gainesville Fl not to mentioned did a little drag racing on the weekends at the local drag strip. My hearing has never recovered.

The Truth Is Out There

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In my youth, I played in local rock bands in Gainesville Fl not to mentioned did a little drag racing on the weekends at the local drag strip. My hearing has never recovered.

 

The Sci Am article says that "it is prudent to avoid unprotected exposure to any sounds in excess of 100dB." You most likely exceeded this limit in both above cases...

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The Sci Am article says that "it is prudent to avoid unprotected exposure to any sounds in excess of 100dB." You most likely exceeded this limit in both above cases...

 

Hiro I would agree, in the 70's we really didn't even consider the damage to our hearing by playing loud music. I call it youthful ignorance and we pay for it years later.

The Truth Is Out There

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