Are you heading to Glastonbury, Isle of Wight, or one of the many other festivals and concerts this year?
While going to live music events is a great way to enjoy listening to your favourite bands or supporting local artists, many of us don’t realise the risk to our hearing that these events pose through prolonged exposure to high sound levels.
We’ve been speaking to Emma, a wax removal clinician and self-proclaimed metalhead, as she explains just how important it is to look after your hearing and what you can do to keep your hearing protected at your next big gig while still being able to rock out!
What is noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL)?
As the name suggests, noise-induced hearing loss occurs as a result of overexposure to loud volumes. Prolonged exposure to sounds over 85 dB can cause permanent damage to the delicate structures in our inner ear, which in turn results in hearing loss.
NIHL can occur gradually as a result of many years of overexposure to sounds, or suddenly as an immediate reaction to a very loud sound.
What is the impact of noise-induced hearing loss?
Although it can be temporary, more often than not noise causes permanent damage to our hearing. Aside from age-related factors, exposure to loud noises is the second biggest cause of hearing loss.
Noise-induced hearing loss and tinnitus can also go hand-in-hand, as over-exposure to high volumes can trigger this condition. Often the tinnitus symptoms will go away on their own, however in some cases they don’t, which is when we would advise you to see an audiologist.