Deafness, tinnitus and the invisible toll of loud music

Analogous

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“…When being sonically bombarded (with music), you don’t have the bandwidth to be distracted by negative or unwanted thoughts. You’re in a heightened state that feels detached from prior context, which makes immersing yourself in sound an unparalleled method of release….”

Unfortunately for us, there is an overlap between pleasurable loudness and dangerous loudness, so while music at a higher volume sounds better, it comes with a neurological toll. With higher volumes, we get increased enjoyment, but also harm the cells in our ear that respond to sound, which once damaged malfunction and are irreplaceable.

The effect of excessive sound is common to anyone who’s come home from a night out to find their ears still ringing long after the music’s stopped. That internal siren is called tinnitus and is the sensation of the hair cells responsible for processing pitch misfiring after sufficient wear and tear. Tinnitus, both short-term and more permanent, and hearing loss are common byproducts of listening at unsafe levels….

…stress, cardiovascular disease, and cognitive impairment are all possible results of undue time spent under auditory strain (be it from music or other environmental noise like freeways, aircrafts, or power tools).”

 
“…When being sonically bombarded (with music), you don’t have the bandwidth to be distracted by negative or unwanted thoughts. You’re in a heightened state that feels detached from prior context, which makes immersing yourself in sound an unparalleled method of release….”

Unfortunately for us, there is an overlap between pleasurable loudness and dangerous loudness, so while music at a higher volume sounds better, it comes with a neurological toll. With higher volumes, we get increased enjoyment, but also harm the cells in our ear that respond to sound, which once damaged malfunction and are irreplaceable.

The effect of excessive sound is common to anyone who’s come home from a night out to find their ears still ringing long after the music’s stopped. That internal siren is called tinnitus and is the sensation of the hair cells responsible for processing pitch misfiring after sufficient wear and tear. Tinnitus, both short-term and more permanent, and hearing loss are common byproducts of listening at unsafe levels….

…stress, cardiovascular disease, and cognitive impairment are all possible results of undue time spent under auditory strain (be it from music or other environmental noise like freeways, aircrafts, or power tools).”

Unfortunately I am living with tinnitus for the last couple of years. But in my case , it did'nt happen due to exposure of loud music or noise.
But yes, its more rampant if you listen to loud music , or continuously listen to music over in-ear head phones .
 
Unfortunately I am living with tinnitus for the last couple of years. But in my case , it did'nt happen due to exposure of loud music or noise.
But yes, its more rampant if you listen to loud music , or continuously listen to music over in-ear head phones .
Sorry to hear that you have tinnitus. Hope it’s not too bad
 
Very important thread and only if it had been posted a year back. I bursted my ears constantly testing action sequences. I don’t use my HT at high volumes but there where days where I sat for 4-5 hours continuously watching only heavy action sequences with loud explosions and gun shouts to test subwoofers. This pattern damaged my ears.Tinnitus is very depressing and traumatic when it’s very loud and 24/7 like the one I have. When tests showed minimal hearing loss i was least bothered about it cause tinnitus was even more worse. This hobby has a hidden danger but if we use our system wisely giving periodic breaks, our ears should be safe. Addictively using it for long hours on a daily basis is not safe.
 
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Certainly deafness/tinnitus is a problem but so far I have not had an issue and I listen to music at about 110db everyday, loud sessions are 130db. Video, well I haven't really measured video, it should be around 110db but who cares, it's video.
 
I stopped listening to music at high spl levels long back, and mostly resort to near field listening. My setup give sufficient details at low volumes to satiate my requirement.
The only time I have to sit through sine waves and loud sessions is while tuning audio setups in car which too has now become far and wide.

I have a soundbar which I hardly ever use. Any rare occasion of watching movie in a theatre (pre Covid days) is followed by a few days of detoxification before I can get back to enjoying my stereo.

After recovery from severe chest infection last year, I had frequent problems of stuffiness in the left ear keeping me off music and even TV watching for almost 5 months. It has since subsided.
 
I generally avoid heavy bass oriented tracks and usually my music listening is at low volume levels, near-field. If I listen at raised volume levels I'm left with a dreadful headache which doesn't go away unless I sleep at night.
I stopped listening to music at high spl levels long back, and mostly resort to near field listening. My setup give sufficient details at low volumes to satiate my requirement.
The only time I have to sit through sine waves and loud sessions is while tuning audio setups in car which too has now become far and wide.

I have a soundbar which I hardly ever use. Any rare occasion of watching movie in a theatre (pre Covid days) is followed by a few days of detoxification before I can get back to enjoying my stereo.

After recovery from severe chest infection last year, I had frequent problems of stuffiness in the left ear keeping me off music and even TV watching for almost 5 months. It has since subsided.
I'm glad your ear stuffiness has subsided and you are better now. After having COVID my left ear feels stuffy on and off still and it's because of sinus. I now have to resort to nasal sprays quite often.
 
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Certainly deafness/tinnitus is a problem but so far I have not had an issue and I listen to music at about 110db everyday, loud sessions are 130db. Video, well I haven't really measured video, it should be around 110db but who cares, it's video.
You are at high risk of deafness if this is a fact.
Sounds above 90 dB can lead to chronic hearing damage if people are exposed to them every day or all the time. Hearing becomes uncomfortable if the sound pressure level is above 110 decibels (threshold of discomfort), and it becomes painful above 130 decibels (threshold of pain).
Here is an article that explains this:
 
You are at high risk of deafness if this is a fact.
Sounds above 90 dB can lead to chronic hearing damage if people are exposed to them every day or all the time. Hearing becomes uncomfortable if the sound pressure level is above 110 decibels (threshold of discomfort), and it becomes painful above 130 decibels (threshold of pain).
Here is an article that explains this:

You'd think so but this is not the case for me. I've been doing this for over 10 years.
 
I had tinnitus after covid infection. Now its lot better with time. I generally hear at 55-60db with my 250watt amp and 3 way floorstanders. What a waste my wife says.
 
I pity especially small children/college students who have to put on headphones for their online classes during Covid times. Since these go on for long hours, hence not sure if it could have adverse implications on the hearing in the long run apart from headaches
 
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Loud sessions of music can lead to hearing loss.
I have had hearing issues for about 4/5 years now. Finally got it tested; mild to moderate loss in canal and nerve.
For me its family history and maybe pubbing/ear-phone music.
For most of the seniors in my family, the onset was after 60/70 years. For me it was at 45

Got my hearing aids just a month ago.
On the plus side, with hearing aids in my ear, I have a brand new system.
Take care of your ears.

Cheers,
Raghu
 
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I pity especially small children/college students who have to put on headphones for their online classes during Covid times. Since these go on for long hours, hence not sure if it could have adverse implications on the hearing in the long run apart from headaches
They are not listening to loud music - so it should not be that bad.
 
I pity especially small children/college students who have to put on headphones for their online classes during Covid times. Since these go on for long hours, hence not sure if it could have adverse implications on the hearing in the long run apart from headaches
The two critical factors are loudness and duration of exposure to loud sounds.
The threshold of pain is about 110 db for most. When it becomes uncomfortable or painful the instinct to avoid pain kicks in., I doubt students will listen to their teachers talk at high volumes?
Loud music is different
Good quality speakers/ headphones and resolving equipment helps lower volume listening.

It goes deeper

The Influence of Loud Music on Physical and Mental Health​

 
This problem is an epidemic that few are talking about. At times, I feel that I live amongst people with a certain degree of hearing loss. The loudness is unbearably high, whether it is a gym, events or a social gathering. Noise, whether its physical or otherwise is a crisis in this day and age. I take extra care to avoid harm to my ears. Not until middle age, do people recognise what the loss means to them. By that time, it’s too late as this damage is irreversible.

Tinnitus is going to be a common issue among the millennial and the gen-z. There needs to be a better communication of the dangers of this problem.

I’m a low-volume listener and I listen to music at around 50dB. Fortunately, the system is highly resolving. I have minor tinnitus and I learnt to live with it. I ensure that I don’t make this bigger.
 
It's not just the SPL..
It's about how loud is it in which band.
Because of the transfer function of hearing, hearing loss first occurs at 2-3khz frequency.
So a subwoofer playing at 115db won't cause hearing loss..
So the bandwidth of the high SPL matters along with the duration of exposure.
headphone listening and night club levels volumes are what which cause hearing loss.
And the type of content matters too.
Music has constant SPL levels.
Whereas movies have short duration of such high SPLs
Certainly deafness/tinnitus is a problem but so far I have not had an issue and I listen to music at about 110db everyday, loud sessions are 130db. Video, well I haven't really measured video, it should be around 110db but who cares, it's video.
I think you must recalibrate your mic. Or use a calibrated microphone.
First of all 130dB capability is difficult.
And 130dB is insane. It will blow your ears in a few seconds I guess.
 
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Certainly deafness/tinnitus is a problem but so far I have not had an issue and I listen to music at about 110db everyday, loud sessions are 130db. Video, well I haven't really measured video, it should be around 110db but who cares, it's video.
130db is the equivalent of a military jet aircraft take-off from an aircraft carrier with afterburner at 50 feet.
You're telling us you listen (occasionally?) at these levels? Right!
Do you have any neighbours left? In the stadium neighbouring yours? :p
 
So a subwoofer playing at 115db won't cause hearing loss..
Right and it is the high frequencies that cause the damage. My case also it was the same and I have mild hearing loss in the 1khz-4khz region due to playing loud action sequences continuously for 4-5 hours.
 
@sumitkpandit just use a app on your phone and measure the ambient sound level. Quite a few apps are around like DecibelX, Soundmter, RTA analyse etc.
 
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