Summer holidays are filled with lots of lovely outdoor activities but they can also involve long car journeys plugged into tablets and more down time spent on technology. During these times please stay aware of protecting your ow hearing and your children’s hearing.
Extended time listening with headphones to loud noise can lead to permanent damage of the inner ear which cannot be corrected. The great news is there are easy ways to prevent this from happening while still enjoying technology and some much needed chill time.
Harvard University has a great article
How loud is too loud?
The World Health Organisation (WHO) tells us that Children should not listen to devices louder than 75 decibels.
This is because sound at this level and less is unlikely to cause significant damage to the ears.
However the scary thing is most personal listening devices, i-pads and phones can be turned to a maximum volume of 105- 110 dB
“For reference, exposure to sound levels above 85 dB (equal to a lawnmower or leaf blower) can cause possible ear damage with exposure of more than two hours, while exposure to sound of 105 to 110 dB can cause damage in five minutes.” Harvard university
How long is too long?
The amount of time spent listening to a sound is as important as the volume of the sound. The louder the sound the less time needed to cause permanent damage to your ears. Fir example listening to headphones at a volume louder than 85 db levels can cause damage in less than one hour. With many children and teens spending in excess of this daily on devices it is easy to understand why hearing loss is children is increasing.
So what are the practical ways we can limit exposure to damaging sounds?
Here are some quick ideas for staying safe:
- Limit i-pad/tablet’s devices volume by going into settings and setting a maximum limit of sound output.
- Choose high quality headphones that have child safety volume limiting options.
- Stay engaged with how loud your child’s listening levels are listening to and how long they have been listening for. As a mum of two boys, who both love YouTube, Tic Toc videos and music I know how difficult this can be. I try and encourage them to be vigilant by setting the volume to a comfortable level in a quiet environment to no more than 60% of maximum volume.
Resources to find out more information and more tips for staying safe:
Dangerous Decibels is a campaign and organisation all about reducing noise induced hearing loss and tinnitus. Look at their resources: http://dangerousdecibels.org/
Remember if you are going to any festivals or live events over the summer, wear ear defenders or ear plugs designed to reduce noise.
The World Health Organisation has put together this information leaflet with lots of healthy hearing tips:
Read this Qustodio blog for all the information you need to know for staying safe and for other useful links: