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Author: admin | 22.12.2013 | Category: Tinnitus Hearing Loss

With over 360 million people suffering from disabling hearing loss throughout the world, and 16% of that figure being attributed to occupational noise, it is without question that more needs to be done to increase awareness.
Recognizing and understanding the amount of noise that our ears can endure is the first step to preventing noise induced hearing loss. The following infographic was designed to raise awareness on noise induced hearing loss, and to provide information on symptoms to be aware of. There are a variety of industries in which people are subjected to excessive noise, and unfortunately damage from noise exposure often goes unnoticed. When you take a hearing test, your audiologist will have you listen to a series of different pitches through earphones.
Thresholds will be measured for different pitches in each ear and then charted on an audiogram. Hearing loss is complicated, thus the audio simulations on this web page do not reflect the true nature of hearing loss but instead are intended for educational use. Central Auditory Processing Disorder (CAPD) may also be present in those with normal thresholds. Some prescription drugs are toxic to the ear and hearing must be monitored during drug treatment.
Even when a hearing loss is considered mild, its impact on everday listening should not be underestimated, especially for children.
Another way to get a rough idea of what a mild hearing loss sounds like, is to plug your ears with your fingers.

The audiogram to the left is typical of an age-related hearing loss, also called presbycusis.
A severe hearing loss significantly reduces ones ability to understand conversational speech. A severe age-related hearing loss may significantly impair onea€™s ability to hear most consonants but they may hear some vowels. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate that 17% of adults aged 20-69 years have permanent hearing loss from exposure to loud noise.
A rising audiogram is a less common configuration but may be associated with Menierea€™s disease. Menierea€™s disease usually affects one ear first before eventually affecting the other ear.
The views and opinions expressed in this page are strictly those of the page author.The contents of this page have not been reviewed or approved by the University of Minnesota.
CAPD affects ones ability to process auditory information which leads to increased difficulty understanding speech and may account for language delays in children.
Michael Kilgard, co-author and Margaret Fonde Jonsson Professor in the School of Behavioral and Brain Sciences.
The left side of the audiogram corresponds to low pitches, whereas the right side corresponds to high pitches.
The last sound you were able to hear is marked as your "threshold" for that particular pitch.

Similarly, a dot towards the top of the audiogram means an individual can detect quiet sounds whereas a marking towards the bottom of the audiogram means the sound needed to be much louder before the person could detect it.
One group heard a high-frequency noise at 115 decibels inducing moderate hearing loss, and a second group heard a low-frequency noise at 124 decibels causing severe hearing loss.Dr. Michael KilgardFor comparison, the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association lists the maximum output of an MP3 player or the sound of a chain saw at about 110 decibels and the siren on an emergency vehicle at 120 decibels. Regular exposure to sounds greater than 100 decibels for more than a minute at a time may lead to permanent hearing loss, according to the NIDCD.Researchers observed how the two types of hearing loss affected speech sound processing in the rats by recording the neuronal response in the auditory cortex a month after the noise exposure. The auditory cortex, one of the main areas that processes sounds in the brain, is organized on a scale, like a piano. Neurons at one end of the cortex respond to low-frequency sounds, while other neurons at the opposite end react to higher frequencies.In the group with severe hearing loss, less than one-third of the tested auditory cortex sites that normally respond to sound reacted to stimulation. The neurons reacted slower, the sounds had to be louder and the neurons responded to frequency ranges narrower than normal.
Neurons reacting to high frequencies needed more intense sound stimulation and responded slower than those in normal hearing animals.

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