Generation Deaf: NBC News Story on Damaging Effects of Earbuds

Discussion in 'Awareness & Fundraising' started by marqualler, May 18, 2015.

tinnitus forum
    1. marqualler
      Nerdy

      marqualler Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Minneapolis, MN
      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Ear infection / Mild Noise Induced Hearing Loss
      Just saw a great article from NBC News today regarding the use of earbuds and the danger associated with using them. The case study individual has tinnitus and has discontinued using earbuds.

      http://www.nbcnews.com/health/health-news/generation-deaf-doctors-warn-dangers-ear-buds-n360041

      Article in full:

      Generation Deaf: Doctors Warn of Dangers of Ear Buds
      BY SUSAN DONALDSON JAMES

      Hearing loss began early for Josh Musto, triggered at first by a heavy metal concert and worsened by years of playing guitar in two bands. Listening to loud music constantly through ear buds may be to blame for a ringing in his ears.

      "I've been a musician forever," said Musto, now 21 and a junior at the New School in New York City. "There's a lot of noise in my life."

      Musto is not alone. Doctors warn that a steady onslaught of loud noise, particularly through ear buds, is damaging the hearing of a generation wired for sound — although they may not realize it for years.

      Earlier this year the World Health Organization warned that 1.1 billion young people are at risk of hearing loss because of personal audio devices, such as smartphones, and damaging levels of sound at entertainment venues like electronic dance music festivals, where noise levels can top 120 decibels for hours.

      "Probably the largest cause [of hearing damage] is millennials using iPods and [smartphones]," says Dr. Sreekant Cherukuri, an ear, nose, and throat specialist from Munster, Indiana.

      Hearing loss among today's teens is about 30 percent higher than in the 1980s and 1990s, Cherukuri estimates.

      "You (once) had a Walkman with two AA batteries and headphone thongs that went over your ears," he told NBC News. "At high volume, the sound was so distorted and the battery life was poor. Nowadays, we have smart phones that are extremely complex computers with high-level fidelity."

      Cherukuri tells young patients to stop wearing headphones — especially earbuds, which place the sound closer to the ear drum, enhancing volume by as much as 9 decibels.

      "It's very easy to achieve unknowingly," he said.

      According to the National Institutes of Health, repeated exposure to sound over 85 decibels can cause hearing loss. Permanent damage can happen in minutes, experts say, and when the damage is done, it's irreversible.

      "Noise exposure in kids is a growing concern," said Nicole Raia, a clinical audiologist at University Hospital in Newark, New Jersey.

      Raia said she sees more tinnitus in young people, an early sign of hearing loss, but, "we don't catch them until they are in their 20s and 30s."

      And because audio-screening protocols are not that sophisticated, many children with subtle damage pass hearing tests, she added.

      A study published in 2014 revealed that nerve synapses can be more vulnerable to damage than hair cells in the inner ear. When young animals were exposed to loud noise, even just once, they had accelerated hearing loss later in life.

      "Within minutes of exposure, the points between the hair cells and the neurons were injured and the loss was permanent," said co-author Sharon Kujawa, director of the department of audiology at Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary.

      The problem is when there is exposure to excessive noise, it goes away within a few hours.

      This "hidden" hearing loss is not picked up by standard threshold tests on which all national standards are based.

      Experts say the best way to protect young ears is to apply the "60/60" rule: Keep the volume on the MP3 player under 60 percent and only listen for a maximum of 60 minutes a day.

      When using headphones in a noisy place like a school bus or subway, the tendency is the turn the volume up, so use headphones that cover up outside noise.

      And to protect your kids, use Apple's parental control setting to set lower sound levels on iPhones and iPods, locked in place with a password.

      For small children at loud sporting events, music concerts or riding on the subway, buy ear protection.

      As for Musto, he said he "got a lot smarter."

      After seeing a doctor, he only uses over-the-ear headphones and protects his ears from loud noise with customized ear plugs. He gave up earbuds a long time ago.

      Today, he continues to play in two bands and interns at Sirius XM radio, doing interviews and some DJing.

      "If I couldn't hear, I wouldn't be able to do this," he said.

      150516-hearing-chart-jsw_037aa2031638009e1ded2e552365b0f9.nbcnews-ux-680-900.jpg
       
      • Like Like x 1
    2. Nucleo

      Nucleo Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2011
      So tinnitus actually might come from neurological damage according to them. I'm not surprised this type of damage isn't picked up on audiograms. I kept trying to tell my audiologist that hearing goes way beyond measuring thresholds in a sound-proof booth but she can't seem to understand or care.

      Inner ear cells regenration might not be necessary then. Regenerating the nerves might do the trick. We're a lot more advanced in regenerating neurons than stereocilia.
       
      • Like Like x 3
      • Agree Agree x 1
    3. Danny Boy
      Cheerful

      Danny Boy Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      England
      Tinnitus Since:
      7/2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Ear infection
      These warnings won't do nothing, people never listen...Until it's too late...Sadly, headphones are so, so popular.
       
      • Like Like x 1
      • Agree Agree x 1
    4. Nucleo

      Nucleo Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2011
      Yeah. It can't happen to me. It's always others right?

      I feel kind of bad for this but more and more people will get tinnitus until we reach some sort of critical mass. Only then will enough awareness be raised.
       
      • Agree Agree x 1
    5. Danny Boy
      Cheerful

      Danny Boy Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      England
      Tinnitus Since:
      7/2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Ear infection
      Totally agree...People on the bus seriously they play their headphones so loud you can hear it across the bus, so I'm gonna go on record and say within the next 20 years hearing loss and tinnitus will be an epidemic.
       
      • Agree Agree x 4
    6. Nucleo

      Nucleo Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2011
      Yeah sometimes it's pretty bad. They're trying to drown out exteroir noise when it's already loud enough as it is.
       
    7. Danny Boy
      Cheerful

      Danny Boy Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      England
      Tinnitus Since:
      7/2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Ear infection
      Well, it's crazy. I hate to say this, but we need more people with tinnitus as only then will they cure it. I know it's horrible, but that's how it is, sadly.
       
      • Agree Agree x 2
    8. dan
      Chatty

      dan Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      06/2011
      I know its horrible, but i am looking forward to that day.
       
    9. Danny Boy
      Cheerful

      Danny Boy Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      England
      Tinnitus Since:
      7/2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Ear infection
      Wish it could be now...
       
      • Like Like x 1
      • Agree Agree x 1
    10. Brianna
      No Mood

      Brianna Member Benefactor

      Location:
      US, NC (the progressive part :) )!
      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2011
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      No clue - too many causes.
      Dopes developing the products likely don't have to predict long-term hearing loss. That would hurt their sales. Many people don't look to the future for consequences. Look at the US pattern (sorry for my ignorance about other countries) - very little stops businesses and warning people of tinnitus ... I don't think that will happen.
       
    11. Nucleo

      Nucleo Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2011
      Of course they don't. Just as laser manufacturers don't have to predict vision loss or car manufacturers don't have to predict loss of limbs that might happen during reckless driving. The user is responsible for his own safety.

      If anything it's the health autorities who should be more aggresive in promoting the dangers of noise.

      Damaging noise levels don't hurt so and many people don't know what. People do not take hearing loss seriously. They think it's just going to make them hear less loud so turning the volume up is just an easy fix right?
       
      • Agree Agree x 2
    12. marqualler
      Nerdy

      marqualler Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Minneapolis, MN
      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Ear infection / Mild Noise Induced Hearing Loss
      Yeah I was thinking about this on the bus today--watching about half the people on the bus wearing earbuds. I was definitely one of those people as recently as a year ago. The problem is that Apple advertising $$$ stretch much, much further than ENTs in articles like this one warning people--and even when that happens, most people don't believe (or refuse to believe) that it can happen to them.
       
    13. Danny Boy
      Cheerful

      Danny Boy Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      England
      Tinnitus Since:
      7/2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Ear infection
      Totally agree. So many people using headphones...I believe that's why there's a fudge load more research is happening in regards to hearing loss/tinnitus. I mean, pharmaceutical companies know it's becoming a bigger and bigger issue thus why there's more investment in that area.
       
    14. Nick Pyzik
      Depressed

      Nick Pyzik Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      6/23/15
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Listening to in-ear headphones & playing in a band
      If only we had more work being done on neuron regeneration like we have being done for hair cell regeneration. :(

      Constant headphone use and when irresponsibly used = Hidden Hearing Loss
       
    15. Dubbyaman
      Angry

      Dubbyaman Member

      Location:
      Northern Indiana
      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Excessive loud noise
      Thats exactly how I thought it worked. Boy was I dead wrong!
       
      • Agree Agree x 1
    16. Dutchy
      Not worthy

      Dutchy Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Netherlands
      Tinnitus Since:
      12/2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Neuronmodulation suggests noise induced?

      What's more worrying to me is that there's still this outdated testing system (as in 2016) and lack of caring beyond the
      hearing of words or being able to have a conversation.I think being able to hear someone whisper is not nearly as important compared to being able to pick up sounds over a greater length/distance.( higher frequencies threshold )
      In terms of hearing it's both important,i highly doubt though that danger is going to whisper up close.
       
    17. Champ
      Woot

      Champ Member Benefactor Team Tech

      Location:
      Boston, MA
      Tinnitus Since:
      1/2013
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic trauma from headphones
      How wonderful would it be if repairing or replacing the neuron cleared out most of the tinnitus o_o
       

Share This Page

Loading...
If you have ringing ears then you've come to the right place. We are a friendly tinnitus support board, dedicated to helping you discuss and understand what tinnitus treatments may work for you.