Blasting music and guitar riffs may give you a high, but if a health care expert suggests to you, give turning down the volume or ear protection a try. These suggestions were made in a new Vanderbilt study carried out along with MTV.com shows.
Roland Eavey, director of the Vanderbilt Bill Wilkerson Center and chair of the Department of Otolaryngology, conducted the research in 2007 while working at Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary at Harvard.
Eavey's study, a follow-up to his groundbreaking 2002 MTV survey, discovered the media as the most informative source in guiding about risk of permanent hearing loss.
The "Intentional Exposure to Loud Music: The 2nd MTV.com Survey Reveals an Opportunity to Educate" also found that the health care community was the least likely source, despite respondents saying they would change behavior if an expert warned them to the problem.
Eavey said: "Since our last study we have learned that enough people still are not yet aware, but that more are becoming aware, especially through the help of the media.
"We have learned that the audience does use public health behaviors like sunscreen, designated drivers and seatbelts and that the health care community is the least likely source of informing patients about hearing loss, so we have an excellent opportunity to start educating patients."
Eavey further alerted that "hearing loss from excessive sound volume is preventable ... and once it happens, the loss is permanent and cannot be reversed. Even hearing aids might not help that type of hearing loss and the ringing of the ears that can occur."
The study has been published in the Journal of Pediatrics.