Headphones and unprofessional noise have long been the usual suspects in the plans of lawmakers and mothers to reduce damage to people’s ears. The volume of sound and the length of exposure can, over time, damage a person’s inner ear, making it difficult, if not impossible, to hear extreme frequencies.
People above a certain age lose the ability to hear high frequencies mainly because the nerves inside the ear – called hair cells – break down with age. When sound hits a person’s ear, the incoming waves vibrate the eardrum and send a chain of vibrations through tiny bones in the ear, cochlea, and into hair cells, which eventually transform sound vibrations. into electrical impulses intended for the brain. Since these hair cells are the first to encounter high frequencies, these frequencies are the first to disappear once the cells deteriorate.
Unlike other organs, the organ in the inner ear – called the organ of Corti – does not regenerate.
The High Frequency Hearing Test was developed by AsapSCIENCE, a YouTube channel dedicated to animated science videos. The test was titled “How Old Are Your Ears?” “
Much of the research on hearing loss suggests a growing danger in prolonged use of headphones. A study, published in JAMA, found that the prevalence of hearing loss among adolescents aged 12 to 19 increased from 14.9 percent in 1988-1994 to 19.5 percent in 2005-2006.
Worse yet, “adolescents and young adults generally underestimate the symptoms of loud sounds, tinnitus and temporary hearing loss during exposure to music,” the researchers wrote, “and underestimate concerns about These conditions”.
Another study found that listening to music through headphones while exercising can be dangerous after more than half an hour at half volume, due to increased blood flow to the limbs, which distracts the body. blood from the ears. Insufficient blood supply to the ears could make the inner ear more vulnerable to damage from loud sounds, the researchers concluded.
And in 2009, the European Union issued a mandate for all music playback devices sold in the 27 member states requiring a device’s default volume to be within safe levels.
“The mandate makes it clear that safe use depends on exposure time and volume levels. At 80 dB (A), exposure should be limited to 40 hours / week. At 89 dB (A), exposure should not exceed 5 hours / week, ”said a mandate statement.
The National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD) says the threshold for hearing loss is 100 dB, and up to 130 dB – the noise level of the loudest rock concerts – the sound begins to become painful.