Noise-induced hearing loss is a permanent problem resulting from long exposure to loud sounds. It is important to conserve your hearing by using protection to prevent damage. Hearing protection like ear plugs, designed to reduce the decibel levels of sound.
Humans can hear sound between 0 and 140 decibels. Here, zero decibel doesn’t mean that there is no sound, but we cannot hear it. While we can hear more than 140 decibels, it’s too painful for our ears. Exposing yourself to such a loud noise can be dangerous as there’s a high risk of permanent hearing damage.
Let’s check out the many decibel levels you may encounter in your day to day life:
0-30 Decibel (dB), Very Faint:
The sounds that create decibel levels between 0 and 30 include whispers and the ticking of a watch.
31-45 dB, Faint:
In this range, sounds are audible but you may have trouble recognizing them from other sounds. In this range you can find soft conversations, like you might hear in a library for example.
46-65 dB, Average:
If you are walking down the street in a small peaceful town, this is the decibel range of the sound you would hear. The sound of a peaceful stream and the meowing of cat might generate sound in this range.
66-90 dB, Moderate:
Many handheld gadgets like beard trimmers and blenders fall in this range. This also includes annoying vacuum cleaners.
91-100 Decibel, Loud:
This is the level where you need to put in some ear plugs. Anything at this level or above might get you a noise complaint from your neighbors!
101-125 Decibel, Extremely Loud:
Planes taking off, trains, and very loud concerts fall into this range. 110 decibels and over is the level at which other sounds can’t be clearly heard anymore.
126+ dB, Painful:
125 decibels is the range where noise actually starts getting painful. At this point, you’re essentially talking about the sound of damaging your hearing. This is the sound level of a rocket ship taking off.
So, the next time you go on shopping for gadgets or power tools, don't forget to keep decibel levels in mind. You know a little more about different decibel levels and their risks. So you can make an informed decision when it comes to hearing protection!
Exposure to Loud Noise and Tinnitus
Tinnitus is a terrible condition. Your ears keep ringing, and it's because of exposure to loud noise. You might have noticed this already after a loud festival or concert you attended. The show is over but still there’s that ringing in your ears. For some, this is temporary. But others are stuck with it forever.
Are You At Risk?
When you expose yourself to more than 85 Decibels, you may be putting your hearing at risk. Usually, most people do not realise that they are experiencing dangerous decibel levels every day. Sometimes in the most harmless places.
Even a single moment of exposure to an intense sound can cause noise-induced hearing loss. Of course, continuous exposure to loud sounds over the time is dangerous as well. The louder the sound, the higher the decibels. Which means the amount of the time it takes to damage your ears becomes shorter.
Key to Combat Noise-Induced Hearing Loss
Awareness, prevention and early diagnosis are the keys to combat this type of hearing loss. So we encourage you to take a moment and think about the sounds you encounter in your everyday life.
If you experience any of the sounds above 85 Decibels, it may be time for you the get your hearing checked! Prevent those kind of situations, and get yourself a nice pair of earplugs.