When sounds are loud, most people feel compelled to take protective measures. Suppose the loud sounds are coming from a loud place, such as a club. In that case, individuals will generally try to limit their exposure, even putting tissue paper in their ears for protection. If loud sounds occur at work, employers are legally compelled to provide protection and limit exposure to short periods.
On the other hand, some sounds might not be seen as hearing hazards even though they should be. The “harshness” of a sound, for example, is not always proportional to its volume. A very unpleasant grinding noise can not be that loud in small kitchen equipment. However, certain sounds can be dangerously loud. Even when the noises are pleasant, any sound that registers beyond 85 decibels might harm your hearing.
The following noises should be considered potential hearing hazards, with the length of time spent exposed decreasing as the sounds become louder.
A vacuum cleaner
A vacuum cleaner may not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think about sources of loud noise, but it’s not uncommon for people to have one of these devices in their home. Whether it’s a handheld vacuum or an upright model, the sound can be quite loud at times.
Despite being ordinary household appliances, Hairdryers may produce sound levels of 80 to 100 decibels, which are dangerously close to the ears when in use. Try to choose a certified hairdryer as quiet and use it for as little time as feasible.
Depending on the model, a lawn mower can produce up to 90 decibels of sound, so you should restrict your sessions to two hours or fewer. While mowing the lawn, earplugs or noise-canceling earmuffs may be beneficial.
Consider using hearing protection if you have a large job that requires a lot of sawing or hammering. Many power tools, such as table saws, circular saws, chain saws, and jackhammers, have 100 dB or higher sound levels. Use these power tools for no more than fifteen minutes.
Even though there are restrictions to ensure that these vehicles do not produce excessive noise, some riders modify their motorcycles to make their engines louder. Although a helmet may protect your ears, earplugs should be considered, especially on extended rides.
Emergency vehicle sirens can be as loud as 110-120 decibels to disrupt the activities of persons around and considerably louder for those who operate the vehicles. An emergency siren’s objective is to draw everyone’s attention in the area, including individuals who may be listening to loud music or using headphones. Cover your ears with your hands to avoid discomfort if an ambulance, fire vehicle, or police car passes by.
While many people like going to the shooting range or hunting, guns are pretty loud. Guns are extremely noisy, with discharge volumes ranging from 140 to 175 dB. Noise-canceling ear muffs are provided at the shooting range to protect your hearing, but ear protection should be worn when a gun might be discharged, such as while hunting in the wild.
Although many of us enjoy seeing fireworks to commemorate a special occasion or enjoy the summer, they may be deafeningly loud. A professional fireworks display can reach 150-175 dB, which can cause severe hearing damage if the show is extended. Fireworks can be let off from the sidewalk, alley, or backyard in some cities, and these displays can linger all night.
On evenings like these, you might want to consider wearing hearing protection. Simple foam earplugs effectively reduce noise levels, and custom-fit earplugs will be more effective. Take precautions if you plan to be exposed to fireworks sounds at close range or longer than the average performance.
Your Hearing Health
Noise-induced hearing loss can be avoided. Contact us today to schedule a hearing test and learn more about hearing protection solutions if you’ve been exposed to loud sounds or are concerned about your hearing abilities. We’re here to help!