Make Listening Safe

Our ears are more fragile than many of us realise and often young people don't know they are permanently damaging their hearing until it's too late. Sadly, once your hearing is gone it's gone.


The Make Listening Safe Programme is all about educating young people about the risks of preventable hearing loss. Our world is noisier than ever before and recreational noise is everywhere. This programme is all about teaching young people how to enjoy music and other recreational noise, but safely, and not at the cost of their hearing.  


If you would like to receive information about this programme, please request more information here. You can also support this programme by donating here.

NFDHH Youth Ambassador

Lily McManus 

has a message for Kiwi kids.

By making just a few small changes to your listening habits, you'll be able to enjoy sounds safely. Check out our Safe Listening tips below to learn more about how to stay within the safe zone.

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

What happens when you listen to music for too long and too loud?

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.

How does your weekly sound allowance work? 

Think of your weekly sound allowance like an empty glass.


You can fill it up with water slowly over the week with just a little water each day. Or you can fill it up all in one go.


Filling the glass 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.

That's why it's important to monitor how loudly and for how long you listen every week.

Are you staying within your weekly sound allowance?

If you want to keep your hearing for life, it’s important to keep your listening within the weekly sound allowance.


Check out Lily McManus’ video to learn more about weekly limits for everyday sounds. Or download our Weekly Sound Allowance Poster and use this to gauge how well you are staying within your allowance.

Download Poster.

Check your hearing health

Take a free online hearing check

The more we know about our hearing health the better we can look after our hearing in the future. That’s why it’s a good idea to regularly monitor any changes. Take a hearing test here.

Wear your earplugs correctly

Ear plugs can be an important defence against harmful sound, that’s why it’s important to insert them properly.


Roll the ear plug with clean hands into as narrow a tube as you can. Reach over your head with your free hand and pull you ear gently up and slightly out to help open up the ear canal. Insert the rolled up earplug with a slight turning motion until it is well inside your ear canal. 


Watch an instructional video here.

Puro Sounds Headphones

Love listening to music? Now, you can without worrying about going over your weekly sound allowance. Puro Sounds Headphones are capped at 85 decibels to keep you within your safe listening allowance. 


Find out more.

Top 8 Tips for Looking After Hearing for Life

Want to know more about your ears and how to stay within your weekly sound allowance?

Download our brochure here. 

Find out more about our work in schools.