Hearing Loss caused by exposure to environmental noise is truly preventable if some form of noise protection is available and worn by an individual.
During my Audiology and hearing aid industry career I have been testing and diagnosing the hearing impaired for 34 years. I have performed thousands of Audiological Evaluations for the Veterans Administration Hospital, at private practices of Ear, Nose and Throat Doctors and for private and national hearing aid companies. Many of these evaluations have been conducted for noise exposed industry workers as well as the everyday individual.
Environmental noise exposure is a leading form of hearing loss throughout the world. It is present every day in transport, industrial, recreational and work environments such as construction sites. Over time, this noise can gradually lead to permanent hearing loss. It can wear down some of the 30,000 nerve hair cells in your cochlea located in your inner ear. This wear and tear to the tiny microscopic hair cells is similar to a paintbrush or toothbrush bristles slowly deteriorating over time from constant usage.
But, how loud is too loud? To better understand this lets talk dB or decibels. A decibel is used to measure the intensity of sound levels. Starting at 0 dB which is barely audible, 30 dB for a whisper, 55 -65 dB for normal conversations, @70-75 dB for television, radio, and many house hold appliances, 75 dB for highway traffic, 85 dB for a hairdryer, 95 dB for a lawnmower, 100+ dB motorcycles, 105 dB for some MP3 players, 110 dB for chainsaws, 120 dB and more for some concerts and sporting events, 130 dB for jackhammers, 140 dB for firearms or a jet engine, and for fireworks 150 db. Many construction sites can easily exceed 100 dB on an ongoing basis. Any time you are exposed to noise levels which are 85 dB and greater you run a higher risk of hearing loss over time. In some cases if sound is too loud an immediate hearing loss can occur. Sounds of 75 dB and less are generally safe to your auditory system and hearing. Be conservative when sound levels exceed 75 dB because when they reach 85 dB or greater this may cause a permanent irreversible hearing loss over time. Both ears should always be protected from these significant noise levels. If hearing protection is available, why not use it?
Recently I discovered the ToughTested audio line, which incorporates noise control technology. There are a lot of earbuds on the market that ‘claim’ noise isolation and noise control, but I was happy to see that the ToughTested line actually carries a noise reduction (NR) rating of up to 26 dB which means they took the matter seriously enough to actually go through the testing. Typically this level of scrutiny is associated with industrial/commercial products not consumer ventures. This new collection of earbuds can reduce the influence of environmental and background noise by up to 30%, has a microphone for hands free communication and each of the four models in the line is compatible with smartphones. In addition to great sound, they help to protect against hearing loss, tinnitus, and daily stress by helping to reduce excessive noise levels and they dampen loud vibrations before they can damage your hearing.
The earbuds are remarkable because the clarity of your conversations is improved significantly in even the noisiest situations while simultaneously preserving your hearing. Now you can turn the volume down to a safe and enjoyable level for communication or music because you are no longer competing with the background noise. The Halo 360 microphone delivers crystal clear communication and two of the models, Jobsite and Marine, offer a technology called EQ-Voice that changes the frequency response for music or calls at the flip of a switch. This feature additionally gives a 10db volume boost in the ‘voice’ mode for even better call clarity. The Flex foam adapter molds to the ear canal and is secure, comfortable, and hypoallergenic. The Ranger and Marine models even have an added shark fin for more retention if needed. The volume boost wheel is effective in controlling your most comfortable and safe sound levels. This hands free communication device is certainty durable, user friendly and it is built to last.
It’s never too late to protect ears from damaging noise or loud sounds and much better to be safe than sorry. Keep your ears young! YOU and YOUR EARS will be healthier and happier!
Overall, as an experienced audiologist I recommend this product strongly.