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It has been determined that exposure to noise is the most common cause of preventable hearing loss experience in the community. For individuals not experienced with hearing loss it can be very difficult to understand the frustration and difficulties that arise from such an every-day process that we take for granted. A noise injury is mostly acquired gradually as the result of exposure to loud noises over an extended period of time.
Repeated or prolonged exposure to loud sounds increases the risk of hearing damage, and the effects are cumulative. Sounds below 75 decibels are unlikely to cause hearing damage, regardless of the duration of exposure.
Hearing slowly gets damaged in an almost imperceptible way and it can take many years of exposure for the effected individual to actually take notice. The loss of hearing through exposure to excessive noise in the workplace is a well documented occupational health and safety (OHS) issue. The main point is that you do not need to be any sort of a noise expert to know if something is noisy. Steps have been taken through OHS legislation and regulations to limit the amount of noise to which workers are exposed in order to minimise the health risks. Provide Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) such as supplying ear plugs, ear muffs accompanied by an effective education and training programme. But note that the use of PPE is acceptable only as an interim measure until noise levels can be reduced or if there is no alternate practicable solution. High levels of noise exposure have traditionally been discussed in terms of workplace noise exposure, with the hearing loss often being referred to as 'industrial' or 'occupational' deafness. High levels of leisure noise can come from more traditional activities such as motor bike riding, shooting, use of power tools, etc, or from more contemporary sources such as pub bands, concerts and personal stereo players. In principle the same preventative action should be adopted even though this may at first seem more difficult when operating in a different social situation when compared to the workplace.
If you experience tinnitus or ringing in your ears after a particular heavy concert then be warned, your ears are trying to tell you something. 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.
Noise levels louder than a shouting match can damage parts of our inner ears called hair cells.
A­When you hear exceptionally loud noises, your stereocilia become damaged and mistakenly keep sending sound information to the auditory nerve cells.
Read on to find out exactly how something invisible like sound can harm our ears, how you can protect those precious hair cells and what happens when the ringing never stops. Most otologists agree that continual exposure to a noise that is 85 decibels or louder in intensity is dangerous. Otololaryngology-Head and Neck surgery is the specialty concerned with the medical and surgical treatment of the ears, nose throat and related structures of the head and neck. To achieve board certification by the American Board of Otolaryngology a physician must complete college, medical school and five or more years of post M.D. Sound - consists of pressure changes in a medium (usually air), caused by vibration or turbulence. When sound waves enter the outer ear, the vibrations impact the ear drum and are transmitted to the middle and inner ear.
In the middle ear three small bones called the malleus (or hammer), the incus (or anvil), and the stapes (or stirrup) amplify and transmit the vibrations generated by the sound to the inner ear.
The inner ear contains a snail-like structure called the cochlea which is filled with fluid and lined with cells with very fine hairs. Exposure to noise is measured in units of sound pressure levels called decibels, named after Alexander Graham Bell, using A-weighted sound levels (dBA). Exposure to high levels of noise causes hearing loss and may cause other harmful health effects as well.

Temporary hearing loss results from short-term exposures to noise, with normal hearing returning after a period of rest. Prolonged exposure to high noise levels over a period of time gradually causes permanent damage.
Loud noise can also create physical and psychological stress, reduce productivity, interfere with communication and concentration, and contribute to workplace accidents and injuries by making it difficult to hear warning signals. Noise-induced hearing loss limits your ability to hear high frequency sounds, understand speech, and seriously impairs your ability to communicate.
The effects of hearing loss can be profound as hearing loss can interfere with your ability to enjoy socializing with friends, playing with your children or grandchildren, or participating in other social activities you enjoy, and can lead to psychological and social isolation. Combined exposures to noise and chemicals can cause more hearing loss than exposure to either agent alone. Repeated exposures to loud noise can damage hair cells to the point that they won’t recover.
While a single exposure to loud noise can damage your hair cells, it probably won’t destroy them. Sometimes, overexposure to loud noise can trigger ringing or other sounds in your ears, called Tinnitus.
The only way to know for sure if noise has damaged your hearing is to have a hearing examination by a certified audiometric technician, audiologist, otolaryngologist, or physician. Are you exposed to noise from firearms, motorcycles, snowmobiles, power tools, or loud music without hearing protection?
Produced in the style of a TV science show, The WorkSafeBC Hearing Video uses vintage films, computer animation, and noise-defying stunts to demonstrate how your ears work and the effects of hazardous noise on your hearing.
1.Sound - consists of pressure changes in a medium (usually air), caused by _____ or _____. 4.What are the two factors that determine the amount of hearing loss a person experiences when exposed to loud noises? 5.Sometimes, overexposure to loud noise can trigger ringing or other sounds in your ears, called _____. Vuvuzela horn is a plastic tube which is blown by your mouth.  Flu season in South Africa is in elevated state and as per Dr. FIFA is not willing to meddle with the cultural aspect of vuvuzela horns and would like South African fans to enjoy the games by blowing vuvuzela horns. This will depend upon the amount of precipitation that has fallen and the previous weather conditions. In order to prevent hearing loss, people need to be aware of things that can damage their hearing, and learn ways of ensuring their hearing health.
When preventable hearing loss is further coupled to loss due to the ageing process (presbycusis) it is easily understood why hearing loss is more common in the older age groups.
The loudness of a sound is measured in decibels which is a non-linear scale used for scientific purposes. This noise exposure is a function of loudness and time so if you wish to reduce your exposure you must firstly reduce the volume or loudness and then the time.
Noise injury is painless and bloodless and does not rate high on a scale of physical injury such as a broken arm or leg but have no doubt it is a real injury nevertheless. Many workplaces have the potential for a degree of noise exposure, however, some workplaces are identified as posing a particularly high risk for hearing. If the noise level is such that you need to raise your voice to carry on a normal conversation then chances are that it is too noisy.
Just as with workplace noise, if you have trouble conversing over the noise level then it is potentially too loud and exposure must be reduced. 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. In the case of rock concerts and fireworks displays, the ringing happens because the tips of some of your stereocilia actually have broken off.
This specialty encompasses cosmetic facial reconstruction, surgery of benign and malignant tumors of the head and neck, management of patients with loss of hearing and balance, endoscopic examination of air and food passages and treatment of allergic, sinus, laryngeal, thyroid and esophageal disorders. These pressure changes produce waves emanating away from the turbulent or vibrating source.

Frequency is related to a sound’s pitch and is measured in units called hertz (Hz), or cycles per second. That’s why people with damaged hearing have difficulty understanding higher-pitched voices and other sounds in the 3,000 to 4,000 Hz range.
These microscopic hairs move with the vibrations and convert the sound waves into nerve impulses–the result is the sound we hear. The extent of damage mostly depends on the intensity of the noise and the duration of the exposure. Exposure to chemicals, such as aromatic solvents and metals such as lead, arsenic, and mercury can result in hearing loss. Vibration and extreme heat are also potentially harmful to hearing when combined with noise.
You may experience ringing in your ears and some sounds may be muffled, but your hair cells will recover and so will your hearing. It usually develops over several years — you might not even notice the loss during those years. While tinnitus may be a symptom of damaged hearing, it can also be caused by infections, medications, and earwax. The video also demonstrates the proper use and maintenance of hearing protection and how to chose the right protection for you. McNerney, in which 80 people blew into vuvuzela horns. The study revealed that tiny drops were formed at the bottom on vuvuzela. For the purposes of looking after your hearing the most important thing to note is that if you need to use a raised voice to communicate or carry on a normal conversation between two people at arms length then the noise level is potentially hazardous and exposure over a significant time could bring problems. Noise exposure is cumulative over your life-time, meaning that every over exposure adds up a€“ just like too much UV-radiation or exposure to the sun. This is particularly important if your work requires that you are exposed to this level of noise for significant periods throughout your normal work routine.
These regulations set mandated acceptable levels, and the nature of employers' and employees' responsibilities for reducing any exposure above these limits. For this reason controls at the top of the hierarchy are preferable as they remove the hazard and do not rely on changing workplace behaviour for safe working conditions. But you need to look after your hearing so some action must be taken: remove the noise, reduce the volume or remove yourself. The noises around you were muffled briefly, replaced with a buzzing inside your head, almost as if your ears were screaming. When sound waves hit them, they convert those vibrations into electrical currents that our auditory nerves carry to the brain.
When sound waves travel through the ears and reach the hair cells, the vibrations deflect off the stereocilia, causing them to move according to the force and pitch of the vibration.
The pitch of a sound — how high or low it seems — is how you perceive its frequency; the higher the pitch, the higher the frequency.
As the number of damaged hair cells increases, your brain receives fewer impulses to interpret as sound. Without hair cells, there is nothing for the sound to bounce off, like trying to make your voice echo in the desert. For instance, a melodic piano tune would produce gentle movement in the stereocilia, while heavy metal would generate faster, sharper motion. However, since you can grow these small tips back in about 24 hours, the ringing is often temporary [source: Preuss]. High-frequency sounds are generally more annoying than low-frequency sounds and can be more harmful to hearing.
But repeated exposures to loud noise can damage hair cells to the point that they won’t recover.
McNerney said that these tiny drops can stay suspended in air for hours and can enter into another person’s airway.  Dr. Although the lower level controls have the potential to be effective, they are less reliable, relying on individual workers to take steps to protect themselves. This motion triggers an electrochemical current that sends the information from the sound waves through the auditory nerves to the brain.

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