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02.11.2015
According to statistics compiled by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) there are approximately 1 million workers in the country who are currently at risk of developing industrial deafness, who may be possibly looking to make compensation claims for their condition in the future in the UK.
There are various occupations that can make individuals equally susceptible to suffering from industrial deafness, also referred to as noise induced hearing loss, such as those in the construction and engineering industries, foundries, mining occupations, and heavy fabrication. In addition to this, individuals working in call centres and the entertainment industry may also be at risk of suffering damage due to high levels of noise. Industrial deafness is a loss of hearing caused by damage to the hair cells inside the cochlea, resulting from prolonged exposure to excessive noise. Industrial deafness can range in severity, from a temporary loss of hearing to permanent loss of hearing in both ears.
Conditions such as tinnitus - described as a constant ringing or buzzing noise in the ears without any objective sound source - is also associated with noise induced hearing loss. Employers are required to comply with The Control of Noise at Work Regulations 2005, which have been put in place as an attempt to protect workers from having to suffer from high levels of noise in the workplace but if an employer fails to comply with this act and an employee then develops deafness in one or both ears, the employee may be eligible to claim compensation. Industrial deafness compensation claims can be made in the UK if an employer has failed to provide a worker with hearing protection whilst working in noisy environment.
Regardless of the profession, if there are consistent noise levels above 80 dB an employer should be looking into lowering noise levels or providing hearing protection to staff. If you feel that your employer did not provide you with protection during repetitive exposure to excessive noise, causing you to develop deafness, it is important that you consult a legal professional as soon as possible If you are considering making a compensation claim.
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Chris Goldscheider, a viola player of some renown, is claiming compensation from the Royal Opera House for damaging his hearing during a rehearsal in 2012. In addition to claiming damages for his injury, Mr Goldscheider is also claiming compensation for loss of future earnings as he believes that the injury has ended his music career. The effects of hearing loss are often overlooked, or dismissed as trivial and even humorous.
At Michael Lewin Solicitors we help clients who have suffered hearing loss, like Mr Goldscheider, obtain compensation for their injury. Our expertise and our state of the art diagnostic equipment ensure that you achieve the best hearing possible. Logically, it makes sense: those who have worked around high noise levels for many years and have trouble hearing must have a hearing loss that is caused strictly by noise exposure at work, right? In actuality, other factors can play a role in how much hearing loss a person will have over the course of their lifetime.


When hearing loss is due to an over-exposure to noise, a very predictable pattern of hearing loss as well as a predictable degree of hearing loss will emerge.
Interestingly, once someone stops working around noise, the progression of the hearing loss can stop all together.
If you think you have hearing loss due to noise exposure, there are two things to do right away: First, make sure to invest in good ear protection. Permanent hearing loss caused by loud noise exposure not only makes it difficult to hear, but speech can sound unclear as well, making it difficult at times to have a conversation with friends or family. Once sounds reach 85 decibels (about as loud as a gas-powered lawn mower), exposure to the sound without ear protection can only last for approximately 8 hours without it causing damage to the tiny hair cells in the cochlea. Mr Goldscheider is claiming that he suffered acoustic shock caused from the level of noise generated by the brass instruments being played immediately behind him.
It differs from injuries such as Noise Induced Hearing Loss in that it is caused by a comparably short period of exposure. He also claims that he has been left unable to complete simple everyday tasks without the aid of hearing protection.
For many people though, the symptoms caused can be debilitating and affect their everyday lives in many ways.
If you believe your hearing loss may be caused by noise damage, enquire with us for free today.
We work with you over several weeks to tune your hearing device as your brain and your ears adapt to better hearing. For example, certain health factors can make one person more susceptible to injurious noise than another. The amount of loss a person will experience is based on how loud the noise was during the actual exposure itself and how long the exposure lasted. If hearing loss keeps progressing after a person leaves the noisy job, the change is not from the past noise exposure, it’s from the other factors of health and lifestyle. Using ear protection in any instance of loud noise will make sure that you do not experience more hearing loss due to noise exposure. Researchers estimate that 10 million Americans suffer from permanent hearing loss caused by noise. Additionally, loud sounds can cause ringing or buzzing sounds in the ears, which is called tinnitus. Each time the sound is increased by 3 decibels, the amount of time that someone can safely be exposed to that sound without fear of permanent damage is cut in half.


We’ll be glad to test your hearing, make suggestions on how to best protect your ears from further damage and make suggestions for better hearing, too.
Where Noise Induced Hearing Loss can occur after long periods of exposure to slightly quieter sounds, acoustic shock can be caused by short periods of exposure to extremely loud sounds. Smoking, diabetes and high blood pressure, for instance, can increase the amount of hearing loss suffered from over exposure to noise. Long- term studies have been completed with the help of individuals who experienced up to 40 years of sustained noise exposure and with varying levels of noise exposure. Loud sounds can cause long-term damage to the tiny sensory hair cells called cilia (pronounced silly-uh) in the cochlea, which is our hearing organ. Tinnitus can be annoying to those who experience it and unfortunately, it is permanent in most cases of NIHL.
By the time the sound reaches 100 decibels, the safe exposure time limit is about 15 minutes.
It’s always a good idea to have a baseline in order to monitor any changes to your hearing that might happen in the future.
Because hearing loss due to noise exposure can progress over time, you may be unaware of how much you may be missing. In some cases, those exposed to loud noise may only experience a temporary loss of sensitivity to sound.
The results provided a means of determining the pattern, type and severity of hearing loss that is typical of long-term noise exposure based on the number of years that noise was experienced and the loudness of the noise itself. We’ll be glad to test your hearing and make suggestions on how to best protect your ears from further damage and make suggestions for better hearing, too. In other instances, either by repeated noise exposure or by a one-time excessively loud exposure to sound, a permanent hearing loss will occur. Researchers found that hearing loss from over exposure to noise causes a predictable and progressive loss of hearing as long as the person continued to be exposed to that noise without the protection that proper earplugs or ear muffs provide. This is also why two people can work in the same company for the same length of time doing similar jobs and have very different hearing losses. Your audiologist can make a suggestion about which of the different types of custom hearing protection products designed for a variety of noisy environments are best for you.



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