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Protecting the Ears from Excessive Workplace Noise

 Too much sound can cause irreversible hearing impairment or loss. The good news is that it can be prevented.

 According to two U.S. studies, it is estimated that workers who are exposed to harmful and excessive noise on the job is well in excess of 22 million, with the mining industry having the highest prevalence where 75 percent of workers are exposed to loud noise. On the other hand, over 33 percent of workers in the manufacturing industry are exposed to excessive noise, and 25 percent of those who are exposed did not use hearing protection devices.

 Loosing the ability to hear could result from prolonged exposure to loud sounds above 85 decibels (dB). How loud is too loud? A whisper (30 dB), normal conversation (60 dB) and heavy city traffic (85 dB) are okay for the ears but a motorcycle (95 dB), high-volume stereo (105 dB), ambulance siren (120 dB) and firecrackers (150 dB) can cause permanent hearing loss.

 Sound advice from the experts: Hearing loss prevention and intervention programs should be targeted to industries that pose high risk to their workers.

This information is intended for educational and informational purposes only. It should not be used in place of an individual consultation or examination or replace the advice of your healthcare professional and should not be relied upon to determine diagnosis or course of treatment.




I´m 61 years old and lost my hearing gradually over many years. Because my hearing loss developed so slowly, I never realized it was happening. But my friends and family sure did. Because of them, I decided to get my hearing tested. Dr. Andrews keeps working with you until you are satisfied. That´s what I like. I haven´t heard this well in years. ~ R. McGreggor