Hearing loss can affect anyone, regardless of age. The number of children and teens that have a hearing loss has grown in recent years. The World Health Organization has suggested that 1.1 billion young people, between the ages of 12-35 years, are at risk of hearing loss. One major factor is noise-induced hearing loss, specifically because of the excessive use of headphones/earbuds and having the volume up too loud.
Listening to a single song at full volume could change your hearing forever. Many young people disregard the warnings about turning the volume down and giving their ears a break from headphones. They think it is not something they have to worry about until they are older, but by then it could be too late.
Headphones and earbuds are not the only offenders. Other factors include:
- Loud music at concerts, bars, and parties
- Neglecting to wear ear protection on loud job sites
- Heavy traffic
- Keep the volume in headphones and earbuds at 60% or less
- Limit the time spent wearing headphones and earbuds
- Take breaks from loud environments, seek a quiet place to give your ears a rest
- Wear earplugs for events like concerts, if possible. Some kinds filter noise but let you hear the music clearly.
If you believe a hearing loss has occurred, get tested as soon as possible. The longer the wait, the greater the loss. Studies also show that having an untreated hearing loss negatively affects mental health. Getting your hearing tested, and treating any damage, is better for your overall health and wellbeing.
Be smart and protect your ears!