How Loud Is Too Loud for a Momentary Sound? Dropped a Keychain onto the Floor

Discussion in 'Support' started by quietmedic, Sep 11, 2019.

    1. quietmedic

      quietmedic Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Barotrauma + Car horn
      So I dropped my heavy keychain onto the floor while trying to lock the door. Rechecked it with sound meter, wearing earmuffs... Clocked in at 95 dB. Don't know if it worsened my tinnitus yet.

      Anyone have a good rule of thumb as to how loud is too loud and likely to spike or damage hearing/tinnitus?
       
    2. Bill Bauer
      No Mood

      Bill Bauer Member Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      February, 2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      Try to avoid the sounds that make you feel uncomfortable (and especially if they result in spikes). But if you get exposed to one of those sounds, don't worry about it. This is unavoidable. Even if you get a spike, chances are that it will be temporary. Learn from your mistakes, but don't obsess over it.

      Based on my experience, something like a key chain falling and making a lot of noise has the capacity to give one a spike that would last for a couple of hours and possibly a day or two. It is probably not contributing to one's healing, but it isn't a big deal.

      I am glad that you are taking the need to avoid loud noises during this time of healing seriously, but you want to be careful to not overdo it. This has the potential to get debilitating.
       
      • Agree Agree x 1
    3. Mister Muso
      Busy

      Mister Muso Member

      Location:
      Scotland
      Tinnitus Since:
      2007 / April 2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud music
      I walked past a bus which blasted its horn loudly for 2-3 seconds about 15 feet from me. My hyperacusis was at its worst at the time, but although it felt painful at the time, there was no spike at all. On the other hand, playing the piano for 10 minutes with hearing protection has spiked me for a few days.

      Our hearing systems are fickle things.
       
      • Agree Agree x 3
      • Informative Informative x 1
    4. JohnAdams
      Festive

      JohnAdams Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Vatican
      Tinnitus Since:
      May 1st 2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Aspirin Toxicity/Possibly Noise
      no telling, we are all in unique situations, but I think dropping the keys is okay but what do I know?
       
      • Agree Agree x 1
    5. MattS
      Relaxed

      MattS Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      06/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Power Tools
      I think it's also important to differentiate spikes from damage. Lots of things cause spikes - noise, stress, caffeine, exercise. But not all of these things cause actual damage, and these spikes almost always come back down to baseline.

      Will dropping your keys lead to a temporary spike? Maybe, maybe not. As @JohnAdams said, everyone's a bit different. But this is more an annoyance than something to be fearful of. And know that even if you get a spike, you can be confident that it'll come back down again.

      More importantly: Will dropping your keys lead to more damage? Exceedingly unlikely. Even at 95 dB, since it was a 1-second duration sound, it can't realistically be expected to cause more damage. You will be okay.
       
      • Agree Agree x 2
    6. Bill Bauer
      No Mood

      Bill Bauer Member Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      February, 2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      @quietmedic
      I think if one keeps getting these shocks then eventually (after dozens or hundreds of shocks) one might actually end up with some damage. This is the reason one's body is providing one with feedback in the form of a spike - the body is trying to signal for one to not continue doing the activity that results in the spike. It is not possible to avoid those shocks altogether, but it ought to be easy to avoid the number of the shocks that have a chance in resulting in damage.
       
    7. MattS
      Relaxed

      MattS Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      06/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Power Tools
      I'm not sure I agree with this. Again - exercise can lead to spikes, and I don't think one should expect that if you exercise too much you're going to do additional damage.

      It's a nice story to assume that everything is there for a reason, that it's the body's natural defense mechanism. Hyperacusis may be exactly that. But spikes? Not so sure. These could just as easily be consequences of a system that has simply gone slightly haywire.
       
      • Informative Informative x 1
    8. Bill Bauer
      No Mood

      Bill Bauer Member Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      February, 2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      I had something like
      in mind. You might object that we know that concerts can hurt our ears. But then there's the following argument to be made:
       
    9. MattS
      Relaxed

      MattS Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      06/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Power Tools
      All that's well and good, and probably true. But it has only tangential, circumstantial linkage to the claim that spikes are a natural defense mechanism.
       
    10. Bill Bauer
      No Mood

      Bill Bauer Member Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      February, 2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      I think that the testimony from a person who ignored spikes and ended up with permanently louder tinnitus, is direct evidence in support of that claim.

      Here is one that seems to imply that not trying to change one's behaviour in response to learning what makes tinnitus worse can lead to serious problems:
       
    11. Julien87
      Happy

      Julien87 Member Benefactor

      Location:
      France
      Tinnitus Since:
      2006
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise exposure (concert)
      When you sneeze it's louder than 95 dB.
      I don't think this can do damage. According to my physical db meter, brief sounds like clutter hitting a plate or dog barking can reach 110 dB at 1 meter. But since it's very very brief I do not think it can be harmful (for most of us, at least - perhaps it could be dangerous for people who have a severe case of hyperacusis).
       
    12. MattS
      Relaxed

      MattS Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      06/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Power Tools
      No, it is not. It does speak to the fact that noise-induced spikes should not be taken lightly, and that they may indicate that you are stressing the system. And yes, ignoring these noise-induced spikes and just continuing your noise-exposure as per usual could of course lead to a worsening of your tinnitus. All of this is so undeniable that I'm not sure why we're even remotely debating it.

      However, this is not the same thing as suggesting that the spikes are, themselves, part of the body's natural defense system. The blood from a cut that bleeds is an indication of injury, to be sure; but the blood is not itself part of the body's natural defense mechanism. Rather, it is simply an indication of injury.

      You may consider this point moot, but if we are going to really understand the underlying causes/mechanisms of tinnitus, we need to be precise about those causes/mechanisms. Calling them natural bodily defensive mechanisms leads to further assumptions re the nature of spikes that may or may not be correct.

      This, too, is sage advice. But not evidence of a natural warning system.
       

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