Hearing Protection: Do You Follow the 60/60 Rule?

Audiologist in MinneapolisOne in five teenagers, according to the American Osteopathic Association, has some sort of hearing loss. This rate is much higher than in the 80s and 90s, with experts believing that it is partly because of the increased use of headphones/earbuds. Excessive use of MP3 players and listening devices has a potential adverse impact on a person’s hearing, with an increased risk of hearing loss when used at full volume.

Listening through earbuds at a high volume for an extended period of time can lead to lifelong hearing loss for kids, teens, and adults. Hearing aid providers in MN note that even a mild hearing loss could result in speech impairment and developmental delays in language.

Damaged Tiny Ears

The human ear has fragile, tiny hairs that can be easily damaged by noise and sound. When most of the hairs get damaged, the ear-brain connection is eventually lost. This can happen at both ears, especially if you listen to sounds louder than the 60% of the maximum volume.

Noise Exposure Duration

Experts note that the duration of exposure to noise is a major factor in hearing loss. If you listen at maximum volume, for instance, you should only listen to music for about five minutes daily. Keep in mind that the louder the volume, the shorter your duration should be.

The 60/60 Rule

For those who are not familiar with the 60/60 rule, it is one of the best ways to protect hearing when using earbuds. It follows the idea of listening at no more than 60% of the maximum volume for no more than 60 minutes at a time. After an hour of listening to music, it is advisable to take out your earbuds for a cool down period or to give your ears a rest.

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If you love listening to music, every day, it is best to use larger headphones that rest over the ear instead of earbuds that are placed directly in the ear. Follow the 60/60 rule and avoid the excessive use of listening devices to prevent hearing loss.