Noise-induced hearing loss high among youngsters

Low-priced music gadgets is one of the reasons, say doctors

Noise-induced hearing loss high among youngsters

 
Well, think twice before you raise the music volume as there has been a drastic rise in the number of youngsters developing hearing loss.  Many youngsters have developed noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL), which mainly occurs due to exposure of ear drums directly to loud music. As a result, many are suffering from tinnitus (ringing sound in ear) due to loud noise, according to some of the hearing centres in the City.

The problem is very common among call centre employees as they constantly keep their headset on. In many call centres, an employee spends more than nine hours at a stretch on the phone. But, now the problem seems to be growing more among music enthusiasts like DJs and drummers.

Dr Prateek Nayak, consultant ENT, Head and Neck Surgery, Columbia Asia Hospital said he receives at least five to seven young patients every month suffering from hearing problems. "Youngsters have a tendency to listen to music very loud for they do not wish to miss even a single beat. Since there is a continuous input sound and absence of output sound, the ear drum fails to sustain causing induced hearing loss and sometimes resulting in tinnitus. Usage of ipods and mobile ear phones results only in input and absence of output noise," he said.

Since price of these music gadgets have reduced drastically many youngsters tend to use them, unaware about the damages caused by them, he further said.

Dr Nayak has also received complaints from call centre employees, especially those who have joined the job newly. Listening to high volume music can sometimes make permanent damage to one's hearing ability.

Even Dr M P Raghu, an ENT specialist at Sagar Hospitals has received many patients with permanent hearing loss.

"If the patient has developed transient hearing loss then it can be reversible but it is very difficult for a person to get back his/her hearing ability, if it is a permanent damage," he said. It is better to undergo an audiogram test annually to know hearing abilities, he added.

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