Make Listening Safe

Often you won’t realise you’ve damaged your hearing until it’s gone. Noise-induced hearing loss can occur at any age depending on how loud, how long and how often you are exposed.  All ears are different, and some ears are more fragile than others. It’s impossible to know how rapidly or to what degree your hearing might be affected by noise. 

 

Some of the first signs that you have damaged your hearing after listening to loud sounds are:

 

• Ringing in the ears 

• Sore or sensitive ears 

• Everything sounding muted or dull

 

If you want to keep enjoying music, then it’s important to be aware of how loud and for how long you can safely listen.

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How does loud music affect your ears?

It can help to think of the hair cells in your ears being like a fresh patch of grass and loud music being like a group of people trampling on the grass. 

 

Before anyone walks on the grass, the blades stand up right and tall. But, as people continue to walk on the grass the blades become flattened. 

 

If people stop walking on the grass, after a few days, some blades of grass might pop back up and stand straight again. 

 

But, if people continue to trample over the same patch of grass, the grass begins to die, and the damage becomes permanent.

Did you know that your ears have a weekly sound allowance? 

Think of your weekly sound allowance like a 20-litre bucket of water.

 

You can fill it up slowly over the week with just a couple of litres each day.

 

Or you can fill it up with 20 litres all in one go.

 

Filling the bucket up all in one go is like listening to music on max volume. This means you’ll use up all your weekly sound allowance very quickly.

Safe Listening Weekly Allowances

How loudly are you listening? 

When you listen to music at max volume on your headphones, (110dB approx.), you can only do so safely for 1.5 minutes for kids or 4.5 minutes for adults per week before your ears can start to become damaged. 

 

If you want to listen to music for life, it’s a good idea to keep the volume under the halfway mark on your device, (around 75 dB or lower).

Want to know more about how to Make Listening Safe?

 

You can download a digital copy of the brochure here.

New innovations that help to Make Listening Safe

 

As a member of the World Hearing Forum, NFDHH supports a global initiative that incentivises smartphone companies to implement safer listening standards. The goal is better regulation of personal audio devices to limit the risk of hearing loss associated this their use. 

 

There are some excellent products coming to market that are helping to make listening safer, such as, the Puro Sound headphones, which limit the audio output to 85 dB. 

Do you know if a new innovation that will help Make Listening Safe?

 

We'd love to hear about it!

 

Send your information to Kimmy West at: kimmy.west@nfd.org.nz

What can you do to keep your ears safe?

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PO Box 37729 Parnell, Auckland 1151, New Zealand

Phone: 09 307 2922 or 0800 867 446 

Email: enquiries@nfd.org.nz

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