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Are You at Risk of Hearing Loss?

It may be time to turn down the volume. When I am listening to music that I enjoy, I turn the volume extremely high, especially if I have my AirPods in. While I enjoy it, it can be harmful to my hearing. The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that more than 430 million people of all ages worldwide currently have disabling hearing loss. The youth are more at risk due to their consistent use of devices such as smart watches, smart phones, headphones, earbuds, and attending loud venues like parties or concerts without regulation.

In the United States, hearing loss is the third most common chronic physical condition after high blood pressure and arthritis, according to the CDC. If listening to anything loud you should not be exposed to it for too long. The higher the decibel the shorter you should listen. USA Today reported that an international team of researchers determined there is an “urgent need” for governments to implement safe listening policies.

To prevent any harm the CDC has steps you can keep in mind.

  • Increase the distance between you and the source of the noise.
  • Reduce your time in noisy areas.
  • Always wear hearing protection in noisy areas, and if using foam plugs, insert them correctly.
  • If you are listening to music or something else, keep the volume at a safe level and only listen in areas that are not noisy.
  • Take a break from noisy activity.
  • Reduce noise at the source of the noise. Use quieter equipment and keep equipment well maintained and lubricated.
  • Enclose the source of the noise or place a barrier between you and the source.

In addition to the steps the CDC provides here is a feature you can use if you use an iPhone. If you go to settings then search “headphone safety” you will be informed on if you have been listening to loud headphone audio for long enough to affect your hearing. You can also turn on “reduce loud” sounds. Your phone will analyze headphone audio and reduce any sound that is over a set decibel level.

Next time you’re listening to something, be aware of the volume to prevent any hearing problems in the future.

 

By Amariyah Mallory, Freshman, Whitney Young

Instagram / TikTok: Dancemari_

 

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Written by Amariyah Mallory

Amariyah Mallory is a life long learner who's passionate about dance, committed to social justice and service, invested in African America culture and current events, and devoted to writing. 

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