It is a seemingly well-known yet highly-ignored fact that overexposure to loud sounds can damage your hearing and be a catalyst for tinnitus. This is one message that many organisations from within the health industry have been fervently trying to get across to young people and governing bodies for many years.
With many people now able to listen to music through their phones or other personal devices, there is an increasing concern over the overall damage being done. However, a new EU directive on the volume limit of all new personal music players comes into at the end of this play this month which could see the number of hearing-damage related statistics fall. To adhere to the new standard, all personal music devices and mobile phones sold in the EU must come pre-set with a volume limit of 85dB.
However, there remains a concern over young people’s hearing, as the imposed volume limit can still be bypassed by the user and bumped up to 100dB.
Hearing based charity, Action on Hearing Loss has predicted that 40% of young people will choose to ignore the revised sound limit and crank up the volume to 100dB, the approximate equivalent of noise produced in a nightclub. What’s more, damage to your hearing can start to occur if the music played at 100dB is listened to for just 15 minutes!
Paul Breckell, Chief Executive of Action on Hearing Loss, said: "I urge music lovers to consider the long-term risks of overriding the safe setting as overexposure to loud music can trigger tinnitus, and remember that a good pair of noise cancelling headphones can make all the difference."
Action on Hearing Loss conducted a survey to calculate the success rate of the new EU standard and to discover what young people thought about it. Staggeringly, more than three quarters of the 1,500 16-34 year olds surveyed didn’t even know that a new standard was being put into place. 79% were unaware of any changes and even more horrendous was that the survey found 40% of respondents would actively ignore the health risks connected with playing loud music, sacrificing their ears for higher sound levels. There was a positive sign though, at least 60% of those surveyed said they would take precautions to help safeguard their hearing.
After February 2013, all personal music devices and mobile phones will be equipped with a default sound limit of 85dB, which is not only music to the ears of those at Action on Hearing Loss but also to ourselves and to anyone else that has taken up arms in the battle against hearing loss.
At AllEarPlugs we couldn’t agree with more with this directive and continue to urge music listeners, of every age; be mindful of the sound level that is entering your ears and wear musician’s ear plugs whenever you attend a festival, gig or concert. Once it's gone, it's gone for good.
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