Tinnitus, known as “ringing in the ears”, is becoming a growing health concern among teens and children. Listening to loud music and going to clubs and parties is putting adolescents at risk of permanent ringing in their ears.
According to the Scientific Reports journal, 30% of 11 – 17 year olds surveyed reported persistent Tinnitus. These adolescents had been exposed to loud music or poor listening habits. What is interesting is that those with Tinnitus could hear just as well as those without the condition, but were not able to tolerate loud noise as well.
Low noise tolerance like this can be an indicator of underlying damage to nerves that work to process sound, which contribute to worsening hearing impairments down the road. Tinnitus can be a debilitating condition for some people and it can be prevented by taking a few common sense precautions.
Neuroscience research indicates that this “hidden hearing loss” caused by exposure to loud sounds in the early years deepens over the life span, worsening one’s hearing ability later in life.
The message to today’s youth is simple: protect your ears. Wear ear plugs at concerts and stand further away from amplifiers. Turn down your music and invest in high quality headphones that block out background noise. Once your hearing is damaged, there’s no going back.