National Protect Your Hearing Month occurs every October to provide an opportunity to raise awareness about hearing. Everyone is encouraged to think about their own hearing and have their hearing checked if they think they have any hearing problems.
The louder the noise, the faster it can damage your hearing. The National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD) encourages everyone to learn about Noise-Induced Hearing Loss (NIHL) and the steps they can take to prevent it from occurring. NIHL can happen to anyone at any age.
Some examples of high noise levels include:
- Sporting events
- Work equipment
- Listening to music through headphones at high volumes
Sounds at 70 decibels (dB) are generally safe. Noise at 85 dB can be dangerous for long periods of time. Noises at 90 dB are typically considered dangerous and can damage hearing. Any noises above 120 dB can cause immediate harm to the ears.
What can you do to protect your ears? You can use hearing protection devices such as earplugs and earmuffs when noises are at dangerous levels or for extra precautions to protect your ears.