Samar, a 32 year old music enthusiast had been working as a disc jockey (DJ) for the past 5 years. He absolutely loved his job as it kept him close to his passion - music.
However, his life trouble started when he began experiencing ringing in his ears. The constant exposure to high decibels of noise had caused damage to his inner ear! Jobs where loud noise is an essential part of the working environment such as Samar's can make you susceptible to hearing loss.
‘If you are in an environment where you cannot hear the voice of a person who is 3 feet away from you, the noise level could be damaging your ears.’
People who work in professions that involve continuous exposure to loud noise are highly susceptible to noise-induced hearing. It is estimated that around 10 million Americans have suffered irreversible hearing damage from noise. The World Health Organization (WHO) says that nearly 63 million people in India suffered from auditory loss in 2005.
Keep this in mind that that if you are in an environment where you cannot hear the voice of a person who is 3 feet away from you, the noise level could be damaging your ears.
"Unfortunately, the effects of noise are often underestimated because the damage takes place gradually. Moreover, loud noises have become a part of our culture. A night out is not complete without a loud music session; youngsters are constantly glued to their mp3 devices with headphones. In some cases, the intensity of noise can be so high, it can suddenly cause hearing loss. For example, a shot fired from a firearm close to the range of an ear can cause damage to the ear," says Ms Neevita Narayan, leading audiologist and founder of Sphear Speech & Hearing Clinic.
"We saw a patient who went to watch the Formula 1 race at the Indian Grand Prix and did not use earplugs as is the norm. The man suffered immediate damage to the ears and suffered hearing impairment from which he cannot recover. Similarly, a number of people who work in construction spaces and factories around Delhi also report incidences of noise induced hearing loss. Completely unaware of the repercussions this can have they do not wear ear covers of noise plugs for the ears, and end up with hearing loss for life. It is very important to raise awareness about this condition and educate people about appropriate preventive measures," says Dr Ameet Kishore, Senior Consultant Surgeon, ENT at Indraprastha Apollo Hospital, New Delhi & Consultant Surgeon at SpHear Speech and Hearing Clinic.
A volume of 85 decibels may take eight hours to cause damage to the inner ear. Our normal conversation is conducted in voices of around 50-60 decibels. The volume playing on our headphone is certainly higher and can damage your inner ear.
Some professions that put you at high risk include music and discotheque employees, traffic police, construction, miners, carpentry and factory workers.