Hearing Health Blog

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Headphones are a device that best demonstrates the modern human condition. Nowadays, headphones and earbuds enable you to isolate yourself from people around you while simultaneously permitting you to connect to the entire world of sounds. They allow you to listen to music or watch Netflix or stay in tune to the news from everywhere. They’re fabulous. But headphones might also be a health risk.

At least, as far as your hearing health is concerned. And this is something that the World Health Organization has also reported. That’s exceedingly worrying because headphones can be found everywhere.

Some Risks With Earbuds or Headphones

Frances loves Lizzo. And so she listens to Lizzo a lot. When she’s really getting into it she normally cranks up the volume (most people love to listen to their favorite music at full power). Frances uses high-quality headphones so she won’t annoy others with her loud music.

This is a fairly typical use of headphones. Needless to say, headphones can be used for a lot of purposes but the basic idea is the same.

We want to be able to listen to anything we want without annoying people around us, that’s why we use headphones. But this is where it can get dangerous: our ears are exposed to an intense and extended amount of noise. After a while, that noise can cause injury, which will lead to hearing loss. And a wide assortment of other health concerns have been connected to hearing loss.

Keep Your Hearing Safe

Hearing health, according to healthcare experts, is a key component of your complete health. Headphones are easy to get and that’s one reason why they create a health hazard.

What can be done about it is the real question? In an effort to make headphones a little safer to use, researchers have offered a number of steps to take:

  • Restrict age: These days, younger and younger kids are wearing headphones. And it might be smarter if we cut back on that a little, limiting the amount of time younger children spend wearing headphones. Hearing loss won’t develop as soon if you can counter some damage when you’re younger.
  • Don’t turn them up so loud: The World Health Organization suggests that your headphones not go over a volume of 85dB (60dB is the normal level of a conversation for context). Most mobile devices, unfortunately, don’t have a dB volume meter standard. Look into the max volume of your headphones or keep the volume at no more than half.
  • Take breaks: When you’re listening to music you really like, it’s hard not to pump it up. Most people can relate to that. But you need to take a little time to let your hearing to recover. So think about giving yourself a five-minute rest from your headphones every now and again. The concept is to give your ears some time with lower volumes every day. By the same token, monitoring (and limiting) your headphone-wearing time can help keep moderate volumes from hurting your ears.
  • Volume warnings are important: Most mobile devices have warnings when the volume becomes dangerous. So if you use a mobile device to listen to music, you need to pay attention to these warnings.

If you’re at all concerned about your ear health, you may want to restrict the amount of time you spend on your headphones entirely.

I Don’t Really Need to be Concerned About my Hearing, Right?

You only have one set of ears so you shouldn’t dismiss the impact of hearing damage. But your hearing can have a substantial impact on a number of other health factors, including your general mental health. Untreated hearing loss has been connected to increases in the risk for problems like dementia and depression.

So your hearing health is connected inextricably to your total wellness. And that means your headphones could be a health hazard, whether you’re listening to music or a baking podcast. So do yourself a favor and down the volume, just a little bit.

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