Men (and Women) Can Lose Their Hearing by Listening to Loud Music


You can lose a little or a lot of your hearing by listening too much with the volume turned up on your iPod or iPhone, or other device, because many of the earbuds in use aren’t very effective so people turn up the volume. Studies have found that users of these Apple devices can be listening at 100-105 decibels. This is well above the OSHA-recommended 85 decibels.

Remember, ears that get damaged stay damaged. They can’t be repaired. And when people talk about decibels (dBA), which is how loudness is measured, we need to remember that they are logarithmic, so that a small increase in the number means a big increase in the noise level (adding 10 dBA DOUBLES the noise level).

If you are socially-inclined and attend galas, they nearly always have dancing, to either a band or a DJ (sometimes a worse bet volume-wise because he has lots of watts at his command). Unfortunately, they almost always have live auctions too, and often when the auctioneer comes on the sound gets louder. (A similar boost happens sometimes when the ads play on radio or TV.) We recommend that you always carry earplugs, and use them when things get too loud. It’s a lot better than suffering hearing loss for the rest of your life.