When you were younger you most likely had no idea that cranking the volume up on your music could lead to health concerns. You simply enjoyed the music.
As you got older, you may have indulged in nights out at loud movies and concerts. You may have even chosen a job where loud noise is the norm. Still, you didn’t think it had any lasting effects.
Now that you’re older and more mature, you probably know better. Noise-induced hearing loss can show up in kids as young as 12. But did you know that sound is so formidable that it can even be used as a weapon?
Can Sound Make You Ill?
In fact, it Can. Particular sounds can evidently make you sick according to scientists and doctors. This is why.
How Health is Affected by Loud Noise
Extremely loud sounds damage the inner ear. After sound goes through the membrane of the eardrum it’s picked up by tiny hairs in the ears. These hairs never regenerate once they are damaged. This is what causes the sensorineural hearing loss that many people deal with as they age.
Over 85 dB of volume for an 8 hour period of time will begin to cause long-term damage. It only takes 15 minutes for permanent damage to occur at 100 dB. A loud concert is around 120 decibels, which triggers instantaneous, irreversible harm.
Noises can also impact cardiovascular health. Obesity, high blood pressure, clogged arteries, and other vascular concerns can be the outcome of increased stress hormones brought on by excessively loud noise. This may explain the memory and headache problems that individuals subjected to loud noise complain about. These are firmly connected to the health of your cardiovascular system.
Sound as low as 45 decibels can, based on one study, start to have an impact on your hormones and your heart. A person speaking with a quiet indoor voice is at this volume level.
How Sound Frequency Affects Health
A few years ago, diplomats in Cuba became sick when exposed to sounds. The sound in Cuba wasn’t very loud. It could even be blocked out by a television. How might it have been able to make people ill?
The answer is frequency.
High frequency sounds like the one experienced in Cuba can do appreciable damage at lower volumes.
Does the sound of nails on a chalkboard make you cringe? Have you been driven crazy by somebody continuously dragging their finger over a folded piece of paper? Have you ever needed to cover your ears during a violin recital?
Damage was being done to your hearing if you’ve ever felt pain from high-frequency sound. The damage may have become irreversible if you’ve subjected yourself to this sort of sound repeatedly for longer time periods.
Studies have also revealed that damage can be done even if you can’t hear the sound. Harmful frequencies can come from many common devices like sensors, trains, machinery, etc.
Your health can also be impacted by infrasound which is extremely low frequency sound. The vibrations can make you feel dizzy and physically ill. Some individuals even experience migraine symptoms such as flashes of color and light.
Protecting Your Hearing
Recognize how certain sounds make you feel. Limit your exposure if certain sounds make you feel pain or other symptoms. If you’re experiencing pain in your ears, you’re most likely doing damage.
In order to know how your hearing may be changing over time, get in touch with a hearing specialist for an examination.