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December 3, 2013 – The Health Department launched a new ad campaign today warning people that listening to headphones at high volume can cause tinnitus (ringing in the ears) and irreversible hearing loss.
Loud sounds, including media played at high volume, can injure the delicate hair-like cells of the inner ear that convert sound waves into the sounds we hear.
Never listen at maximum volume and do not turn the volume up to drown out external noise.
Know the early signs of hearing loss and ask a doctor for a hearing test if you have trouble hearing conversation, need to turn up the volumes on TV, radio or personal music players or experience ringing in the ear.
The campaign is funded in part by FJC: A Foundation for Philanthropic Funds and the Starkey Hearing Foundation. Setting a safe volume limit for your iPad or iPod is important because it reduces your risk of developing irreversible Noise Induced Hearing Loss (NIHL). Extended exposure to sounds over 85 decibels can cause hearing damage and your iPad or iPod can produce sounds over 105 decibels!
Check the chart below to see how long and how loud you can listen to your iPod before you reach hazardous levels of sound.
Click on your iPod model below for a video example on how to set the volume limiter to 70% of the maximum volume.
If you listen to your iPad or iPod at high volumes, even for short periods of time, you have increased your risk of developing Noise Induced Hearing Loss (NIHL). The causes of Noise Induced Hearing Loss include environmental noise, recreational activities, music and toys that exceed safe levels of sound. The number of reported cases of Noise Induced Hearing Loss has doubled in the last 30 years.
Listening to hazardously loud levels of sound for even short periods of time increases your chance of developing the irreversible effects of hearing loss.


Noise Induced Hearing Loss causes include music, toys, recreational activities and environmental noise that exceed safe sound levels. Although hi-fi speakers can be turned up to ear damaging levels, they have the advantage of not being strapped directly to your ear canal. Private listening sessions on headphones and earbuds can be enjoyable, but you must excersice caution not to listen too loudly.
Indoors in a quiet listening environment: According to the Airo study, listeners in a quiet room set headphone volumes at an average of 69 dB, a little less than the average sound level in a restaurant.
Hearing ProtectionOur hearing is an integral tool used for communication, balance, and localization. Another option is to use AUDIO-CD Hearing Test, a self-administered hearing test designed for home use.
The ads encourage people to protect their hearing by turning down the volume when using headphones. The injured cells cannot be repaired, and once enough of them are damaged, hearing problems can occur. Nearly one out of four adults aged 18 to 44 who report heavy headphone use say they have hearing problems, and were more than twice as likely to report hearing problems than those who report light-to-moderate use or no use of headphones. That's why you should limit your exposure to dangerous levels of sound by setting your iPad or iPod Volume Limiter and be aware of how long you listen. This number will increase in the future as the first generation with iPods begin to experience the early and irreversible signs of hearing damage as a result of their headphone habits.
Even more, speakers produce sound that travels through the air before it reaches your ears. With open-air headphones, the ability to hear normal conversation through the headphones is a good indicator that the volume level is safe.


In the Airo study, when the outdoor noise was a mere 65 dB, listeners raised headphone volume levels to over 80 dB. The test is performed over a range of 24 frequencies -- from 20 Hz, the lowest frequency humans can hear, to 20,000 Hz, the highest frequency humans can hear. Since air is an excellent absorber of sound, the overall sound pressure level will be reduced before it hits your ear drum. Because closed-ear headphones acoustically isolate the listener, normal conversation may not be audible when wearing these types of headphones.
Therefore, on a busy street, levels would likely have to be dangerously high to drown out ambient noise - especially if open-air headphones are used. An audiologist can advise you on hearing protection options to help maintain the longevity of your hearing. Second, they passively (and sometimes actively) reduce sound from the surrounding environment.
Instead, a safe volume level may be set by moving one earcup off and comparing the level in other earcup with that of normal conversation. While the Airo study recommends not using headphones in such noisy conditions, if the listener insists on musical accompaniment outdoors, closed-ear headphones and canalphones that substantially attenuate ambient noise may allow for safer listening volumes.
But many of us use headphones and earbuds to block out the world, sometimes at unsafe volumes.
While reducing unwanted noises is a welcome, directly injecting sound into your ear can pose some risks.



Hearing loss at 2 khz 60hz
Sore ear after loud noise




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