How Dangerous Are High Frequency Noises???

Discussion in 'Support' started by Lauren Morse, Apr 23, 2016.

tinnitus forum
    1. Lauren Morse
      Cowabunga

      Lauren Morse Member

      Location:
      Salt Lake City
      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Accoustic Trauma/Migraines
      I'm really curious about this question, as I have read that frequencies in the 2-6 khz range are more dangerous at high decibels and can harm you at a lower exposure time than can other lower pitched noises. I have mixed opinions having been 'bitten' by high bass frequencies before, but...

      In my case, a half- second exposure to a 5 khz sound of 90-95 ish decibels seems to have set off T and ear fullness/pain for me, and probably some hearing loss. I was talking on a telephone when I pronounced an "s" sound too loudly.
      Crazy, I know, but I am wondering if it has anything to do at all with the fact that these noises are regarded as more dangerous in general?

      Any thoughts?
       
    2. Blake

      Blake Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      12/2012
      not too sure about frequencies...for me i just know that it should be kept under 85 db, i try to just keep everywhere im around to under 75 db just in case at an overall level
       
    3. billie48
      Sunshine

      billie48 Member Benefactor Hall of Fame Ambassador Team Research

      Location:
      Vancouver, Canada
      Tinnitus Since:
      03/2009
    4. Bobby B
      Fine

      Bobby B Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      11/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      long term NIHL and recent acoustic trauma
      This scale is to be used when you have no damage to start with.
      Fine if t is due to anxiety or depression

      But If you have had previous acoustic trauma and already suffer from tinnitus due to noise damage then it's safe to say you can chop off another 20 Db at each level from that scale
       
    5. Alue

      Alue Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      Define high frequencies? I believe it was a short duration of very high frequencies that set off my T. I have wondered the same thing, though. I think high frequencies are more damaging to the high frequency hair cells as they resonate with them.

      I agree with Bobby B to a point. I think OSHA standard for hearing protection are way too lenient. They are based on permanent threshold shifts, but Charles Liberman proved you can have significant auditory damage without seeing a permanent threshold shift. I think the OSHA standards should be revised or scrapped all together. NIOSH has a bit more strict standards.
       
      • Agree Agree x 1
    6. Zora
      Kick ass

      Zora Member

      Location:
      Germany
      Tinnitus Since:
      12/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      1st time: Megaphone ;2nd time: headphones too loud
      a referee whistled in my ear, standing close to me during a match. I think it was high pitch. now my T is louder. But the game was only yesterday. I hope it settles.
       
    7. Lauren Morse
      Cowabunga

      Lauren Morse Member

      Location:
      Salt Lake City
      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Accoustic Trauma/Migraines
      @ Bobby B

      Hmm, that may make sense? Albeit I do not think anything under 70 db is dangerous for long periods of time, even with damaged hearing. It may be enough to set off T for sure if one is sensitive, but not hearing damage.

      I do agree, however, that the OSHA standards are not accurate for damaged ears neither are they accurate for high frequency noises. I did read a study somewhere listing danger zones for high frequencies as occurring 10 decibels lower than 85 db starting point, which makes sense.

      ...But why an 80-90 decibel 5-6 khz noise at half a second??! I'm probably sick in some other way so that I was prone to a reaction to my own high consonants, which explains why my ears are so vulnerable. I did have migraine symptoms after the fact too, with ear, eye, and sinus pain in the mix. I am still quite baffled, of course.
       
    8. Alue

      Alue Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      Do you have a link to the study talking about the danger zones for high frequencies? I'd very much like to see it.
       
    9. Lauren Morse
      Cowabunga

      Lauren Morse Member

      Location:
      Salt Lake City
      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Accoustic Trauma/Migraines
      • Informative Informative x 1
    10. Lauren Morse
      Cowabunga

      Lauren Morse Member

      Location:
      Salt Lake City
      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Accoustic Trauma/Migraines
      @Alue,

      Did you ever happen to find any articles about what happens at the high frequency range (2-6 khz?) if you are exposed to a momentary 80+ decibel noise? I am still really concerned, as I keep getting damage from pronouncing 's' too loudly with a total level of just barely over 80 db.
      It seems the previous article I sent to you specified damage would be possible at those levels at 4 hour exposures, less for people who have damaged ears.
       
    11. Sam Bridge

      Sam Bridge Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud music/gigs probably
      How can you prove that?
       
    12. Alue

      Alue Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      @Lauren Morse
      I don't know, I honestly haven't looked specifically for that since we last talked.
      I doubt the levels you speak of would cause any harm. It's not like it's continuous for 10 hours.

      I work in an area right next to a server and there are steam pipes nearby that make moderately loud high frequency sounds that is continuous. On a db meter it only reads about 55db, but that cuts off at 10kHz so there is no telling what the db is above 10kHz. It's really cumbersome because I don't know if it's loud enough to make things worse when exposed to for long periods of time, so I protect my hearing in my office, but when I put earplugs in all I can listen to is my tinnitus and it just screams.

      How can you disprove that? I don't know about the 'chop off 20 db' part, but nobody knows what safe decibels are for already damaged ears. There are no white papers either way. But if you have a damaged system, it makes since that it is more susceptible to further damage.

      The only way they could prove that is if they subject people with already damaged hearing to loud noises to see if there is a further deterioration. Even that is hard to prove because these OSHA standards were based on threshold shifts detected by a pure tone audiometry. It has been proven that there can be irreversible cochlear nerve degeneration due to sound exposure that is not detected by a pure tone audiometry.
       
    13. Sam Bridge

      Sam Bridge Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud music/gigs probably
      So as i asked, there is no proof.
       
    14. PaulBe

      PaulBe Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Cairns
      Tinnitus Since:
      11/2013
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Probably sound, though never proven
      And as long as volunteers aren't forthcoming there never will be.
       
    15. Sam Bridge

      Sam Bridge Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud music/gigs probably
      Thats true. I have been to plenty of concerts with protection and have been okay so far. Before i came to this forum i didn't even consider not going. Maybe i should stop coming here..
       
    16. Alue

      Alue Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      Proof of what? Proof that you can have damage undetectable by pure tone audiograms while staying within OSHA limits? Here is your proof: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2812055/

      Proof that already injured ears may be more susceptible to further damage, I don't have that for reasons I already stated. It may be different for every individual, so if you want to take a chance with yourself no one is stopping you. And it seems you haven't had an increase so far, so that's good. But for others loud noises make the ringing louder afterwords, that's proof enough for ourselves that we should avoid loud places. We don't need a large peer reviewed study to tell what our bodies are telling us.
       
      • Like Like x 1
    17. Sam Bridge

      Sam Bridge Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud music/gigs probably
      I suppose so, it is rather worrying. When i go concerts i would generally say about 10 percent of people wear plugs. I really don't think people are aware of t as a chronic condition. I have 30db dip at 4khz but T only in the right ear which is weird.So i am certainly more protectice of my hearing, no more earphones for me!
       
    18. Alue

      Alue Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      10% is a lot, a lot more than it was 10+ years ago. I've only been to a few, but the last rock concert I went to was in the early 2000s when I was still a teenager. I was a huge music fan, but for me they were way too loud for comfort. That's why I stopped going a long time ago. Maybe my ears were always more sensitive, but now that I think about it, I went to an outdoor concert I think around 2002, it was so loud I couldn't enjoy the music because my ears were ringing and the sound was all distorted and garbled together. I had completely forgotten about that experience, never had any hearing problems or persistent tinnitus until 6 months ago when I had my acoustic trauma, but thinking about it now makes me shutter. Are concerts that loud for everyone?
       
    19. Sam Bridge

      Sam Bridge Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud music/gigs probably
      Yeah they are loud, a few times i have started off without the plugs but for me its too loud so i put them in and makes it alot easier on the ears. Don't know how people tolerate it...
       
    20. Sam Bridge

      Sam Bridge Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud music/gigs probably
      What caused your trauma if you don't mind me asking and do you have a loss?
       
    21. PaulBe

      PaulBe Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Cairns
      Tinnitus Since:
      11/2013
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Probably sound, though never proven
      An analogy: How many sports stars do you see or hear of that finish up with a nagging injury that shortens their career because they always seem to be back and forth to Medical care and just never seem to get on top of it. The healing never occurs to the degree that they can continue to put the same stress on their body that they could before the injury. The thing may superficially heal, but the threshold for re-injury is now lower than the initial threshold for injury. I don't know if this observation has ever been studied/quantified, but in the meantime I think its worth keeping in mind.
       
      • Like Like x 2
    22. Sam Bridge

      Sam Bridge Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud music/gigs probably
      Yep, as i said above it is a worry but i will still go to a fee concerts a year. I have pretty much given up listening to music with earphones though.
       

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