The Sounds of Summer: Unsafe Summer Sounds To Avoid
Repeated exposure to loud sounds, such as those encountered at concerts, sporting events, and when using power tools, has the potential to cause damage to your hearing. Although everyday sounds are not harmful, it’s crucial to be aware of the risks associated with repeated exposure to loud noises, which can result in hearing loss, tinnitus, and hyperacusis. Protecting your hearing is essential because damage from loud sounds can have long-lasting effects and may impact your ability to hear in the future, even after exposure has ceased. Taking the small steps to protect your hearing During summertime, it is essential to be aware of the potential harm hazardous sounds can cause. Unfortunately, many people are unaware of this danger. To protect yourself, we recommend that you heed these prevention measures below to help guard you against these unsafe summer sounds.
Unsafe Summer Sounds: How to Protect Your Ears
The summer season is a time for rest and relaxation mixed in with fun. However, sometimes these fun events can be loud! Here are some common summer seasonal sounds that you should be cautious of:
It’s a common misconception that outdoor concerts are less harmful to your hearing than indoor concerts, but that’s not true. In outdoor venues, the sound tends to disperse rather than be absorbed like indoors, so the sound techs often turn up the music even louder. This results in concert sound levels exceeding 100 dB, which is well above the recommended limit of 85 dB for potentially harmful noise exposure. You should pick up a pair of disposable earplugs to protect your hearing before attending an outdoor concert. Additionally, sitting away from speakers and choosing lawn seats can help reduce your exposure to loud noise. If you have to shout to be heard at a concert, it’s a good sign that the volume is too loud. Protecting your hearing is essential, especially in noisy environments like outdoor concerts.
Convertibles, Motorcycles, and Speedboats
Wind on a motorcycle can be harmful to hearing. At 65 mph, wind noise can exceed 103 dB, louder than a chainsaw. Exposure to noise levels above 115 dB for 15 minutes can cause permanent hearing damage. Use custom earplugs to hear significant road noise. Driving a convertible can cause tinnitus or hearing damage. Put windows up or wear hear-through ear protection if permitted by state laws.
Firework shows, and displays are popular from Memorial Day to Labor Day in the United States. However, these fireworks can produce sounds that harm hearing, with noise levels around 125 dB. It’s essential to protect yourself and your child’s ears by wearing earplugs or using lightweight foam-filled ear cups like Baby Banz. Bringing babies or toddlers to these shows is unsafe because of the high noise levels. If you must bring them, make sure to cover their ears. For older children, earplugs are more suitable. If you plan to buy fireworks for home use, be extra careful, as they can cause severe injuries and are responsible for many ER visits every year.
Professional Sporting Events
Summer wouldn’t be complete without the thrilling ambiance of a professional sports game, complete with the crowd’s cheering. Baseball, in particular, is a beloved tradition in the US and is synonymous with summer for many. Modern stadiums are filled with amplified sounds, such as rock music and firework displays, to enhance the excitement, celebrating home runs. According to a study by the University of Michigan, the decibel levels at major league baseball games average 94 dB and can reach as high as 114 dB. Exposure to anything above 94 dB for more than 30 minutes can damage hearing. Wearing earplugs is a practical way to reduce the risk of hearing damage, and it’s vital to ensure that your children’s ears are also protected.
Lawnmowers and Yard Equipment
Loud yard equipment can harm your hearing. Use electric instead of gas-powered to reduce noise and wear ear protection when using noisy equipment like hedge trimmers, leaf blowers, or lawn mowers. Planting a low-maintenance garden can also help.
Make the most of summer and enjoy the outdoors, but remember to safeguard your hearing. Contact a hearing healthcare professional today if you’re experiencing ear fullness, ringing, or buzzing.