Exposure to noise is part of our everyday lives. From mowing the lawn, to listening to music, we are putting a strain on our ears.
Hearing is a complex process that — through the sensitive structures of the ear all the way to the brain — involves transforming vibrations from our environment into meaningful sound. Exposure to sounds that are too loud for too long can damage this delicate system, which results in noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL).
While immediate hearing damage can result from sudden loud noises (acoustic trauma), NIHL is also caused by repeated and extended exposure to louder sounds. The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends reducing your average leisure noise exposure to 70dB over a 24-hour period. As sounds get louder, your exposure time should decrease. According to health survey data collected from hearing tests, nearly 24% of adults aged 20 to 69 show signs that suggest NIHL.
Audiologists Can Help
If you are concerned you may have noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL), consult an audiologist.
Audiologists are health professionals who can assess and manage a broad range of hearing and balance disorders in people of all ages. They can address NIHL, as well as provide tools and strategies to help prevent further hearing loss and work with you to optimize your hearing health.
To learn more about how an audiologist can help – or to find an audiologist near you — please visit communicationhealth.ca.