Some professional athletes have set a great example of protecting their children’s hearing at their loud sporting events, by having them wear noise-cancelling ear muffs, or altogether avoiding deafeningly loud stadiums and other overly noisy venues.
Parents everywhere are advised to safeguard their children’s ears during fun summer events that can be hazardously loud, such as parades, concerts, movies, and amusement parks.
Hearing loss from exposure to loud noises can be irreversible, according to Audiologist Dr. Susan Rogan, Susan Rogan Hearing, who practices in Westmont and LaGrange Park.
She advises people to be mindful of sound levels and monitor the cumulative exposure for themselves and their children.
Extremely loud sounds, even for a short period of time, can cause permanent hearing loss to the delicate inner ear, according to the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communications Disorders (NIDCD).
Noise-induced hearing loss can occur suddenly or develop slowly over time. The NIDCD says it may be temporary or permanent, and can affect one or both ears. “Even if you can’t tell you’re damaging your hearing, you may later have trouble hearing conversations, especially on the telephone or in a noisy room.”
Measured in decibels, sounds less than 75 are unlikely to cause hearing loss. But exposure to sounds more than 85 may. Normal conversation is about 60 decibels, while a siren or rock concert, can measure more than 120 decibels.
To protect your children’s hearing, avoid dangerously loud environments. When necessary, equip children with appropriate ear protection, keep a reasonable distance from any loud sounds, and limit the length of time they’re exposed to potentially worrisome sound levels. “Avoid noises that are too loud, too close, or too long,” advises the NIDCD.
Susan Rogan Hearing : 319 W. Ogden Avenue, Westmont, IL 60559 : 630.969.1677; and 419 N. La Grange Road, La Grange Park, IL 60526 : 708.588.0155 : www.susanroganhearing.com.