04/21/2005: From the “Of Course it Can Files”…
The Chicago Tribune is reporting Sound advice about those iPods and mp3 players: They may be small, but mp3 players can cause big damage to your ears.
"Let's begin,'' the doctor said as he sent a series of high-pitch pulses into the subject's ears. Afterward, an automated voice said, "Repeat after me: baseball ... mew ... there.''
Mary Adkins, the subject, was getting her hearing tested, something many young people never think about. And even though her results showed she had nearly perfect hearing, she may not be so lucky in the future.
Adkins, 22, is one of millions of people who listen to music on portable audio devices like iPods and other mp3 players. The surging popularity of such players, with their earphones close to the eardrum, is putting more people at risk of hearing damage, audiologists said.
The convenience of the portable systems allows people to listen more often, and audiologists warn that consistent exposure to the loud noises these systems can generate can cause permanent hearing loss.
Audiologists commonly agree that when people are exposed to sounds consistently reaching 85 decibels, they are in significant danger of hearing loss. But most people have no idea what 85 decibels means.
To get some perspective:
· A flushing toilet ranges from 75 to 85 decibels.
· A crying baby can reach 110 decibels.
· A popping balloon can hit 157.
Personal stereo systems with headphones can produce sounds as loud as 120 decibels.
And the problem isn’t those folks where they are singing to songs you CAN’T hear…but the ones who are playing them at decibels where, even with the ear buds tucked into their canal, the outside observer CAN hear every word of the song being played.
Or how about the yokels with the stereo bass on their auto sound systems turned up to a level that can reverberate for a block and half away??
More ways for those E-N-T’s to make $$$ from the “persistently foolish.”
Karen on 04.21.05 @ 01:36 PM CST