These Activities May be Damaging Your Hearing

Are you noticing that some of your favorite leisure activities are becoming more uncomfortable to participate in? This May, the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) is celebrating Better Hearing and Speech Month, a month dedicated to raising awareness about communication disorders, including hearing loss and what can be done to prevent it. Below, their studies have found the noisiest common leisure activities that are most bothersome to U.S. adults.

  1. Bars or Clubs (35%). From blaring music to hundreds of people talking at once, late-night settings typically err on the side of loud to very loud. Bring volume-softening accessories such as earplugs or earmuffs to help decrease the damage of the commotion around you.
  2. Live concerts (33%). Studies show that adults who attended live concerts tend to be bothered by the loudness of the speakers over a period of several hours. Smaller venues can be even more damaging with the sound bouncing off the walls in close proximity.
  3. Attending a sporting event at a stadium (27%). Sports venues of all types come with ear-piercing whistles, bullhorns, loud music and screaming fans. We know you don’t want to miss cheering on your favorite team, but next time you attend an event, bring earplugs or find seats that aren’t in the center of large crowds.
  4. Going to a restaurant (25%). Too-loud restaurants are a common dining trend, fueled by popular design concepts such as open kitchens, high ceilings, hardwood floors and bare tables and windows. While they foster “lively” environments, sticking around for too long will eventually deteriorate hearing.
  5. Going to a movie theater, holiday party or seeing a firework display (21%). While all of these fun activities immerse you into the environment, the uncomfortably loud volume seems to be a constant. Attend events in open areas or host movie nights in at home so you can control the volume.

Listening to noise levels above 75 decibels (dBA) regularly can cause hearing loss over time. Each time there is a 3 dBA increase, the amount of time recommended in that environment is halved, but decreasing the noise level by 3 dBA allows for double the recommended time in that setting.

If you have concerns about your hearing or ears, call Birmingham Speech and Hearing Associates at (205) 871-3878 for a free consultation today.

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4 Office Park Circle, Suite 301
Birmingham, AL 35223
(205) 871-3878