Independence Day celebrations brings food, family, fireworks and damaged hearing

Independence Day celebrations brings food, family, fireworks and damaged hearing

Independence Day celebrations include food, family and fireworks and damaged hearing

fireworks-damaged-hearing-1However, those bright displays of chemical reactions cause loud booms and shrieking noises that could cause damaged hearing.

“The Excalibur probably makes the loudest noise,” Boom Town Fireworks seller Eddie Spears said. “Most of the noise is in the air but it’s still really, really loud. The other ones on a scale of one to 10 are like a five. This one is like a nine.

Dr. Christopher Spankovich said some the fireworks can compare to being at a gun range or the roar of a jet engine.

“It really has to do with the level. It’s (at a) highly significant level (at) 140 to 180 decibels. It’s a brief signal so we consider it a compulsive sound,” Spankovich said.

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No matter how brief it may be, experts still say it can cause damage to your hearing.

fireworks-damaged-hearing-2

fireworks-damaged-hearing

A test using a decibel meter at the Thompson Air Force Base found a C-17 airplane taxing at the Thompson Field registered between 93 and 95 decibels.

The Saturn Missiles firework topped at over a 100 decibels during the test.

Airmen on the field are required to wear two sets of ear protection, but people at home launching fireworks typically do not shield their ears from the damaging sound.

“If you don’t follow the written guidelines the Air Force provides, you are at risk for hearing loss. It can be minimal or complete hearing loss,” Mississippi National Guardsmen Angel Padilla said.

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Spankovich said fireworks damaged his hearing.

fireworks-damaged-hearing-3

fireworks-damaged-hearing

“I actually incurred a hearing loss from setting off fireworks in one ear,” he said.

Once the hearing is lost it is permanent and his hearing continues to worsen with time, Spankovich said

Experts have some advice to follow before you light firecrackers to celebrate Independence Day.

“Keep the (fireworks at a) distance (away), utilize hearing protection devices and that’s going to be your best way of diminishing risk. The other option is finding fireworks that produce less of a bang,” he said.

Also remember once the fireworks are used and are no longer active, make sure you place them in a bucket of water to soak for several hours

Don’t Damage Your Hearing, Buy Your Earplugs Here From Amazon

However, those bright displays of chemical reactions cause loud booms and shrieking noises that could damage your hearing.

“The Excalibur probably makes the loudest noise,” Boom Town Fireworks seller Eddie Spears said. “Most of the noise is in the air but it’s still really, really loud. The other ones on a scale of one to 10 are like a five. This one is like a nine.”

Dr. Christopher Spankovich said some the fireworks can compare to being at a gun range or the roar of a jet engine.

“It really has to do with the level. It’s (at a) highly significant level (at) 140 to 180 decibels. It’s a brief signal so we consider it a compulsive sound,” Spankovich said.

No matter how brief it may be, experts still say it can cause damage to your hearing.

A test using a decibel meter at the Thompson Air Force Base found a C-17 airplane taxing at the Thompson Field registered between 93 and 95 decibels.

The Saturn Missiles firework topped at over a 100 decibels during the test.

Airmen on the field are required to wear two sets of ear protection, but people at home launching fireworks typically do not shield their ears from the damaging sound.

Don’t Damage Your Hearing, Buy Your Earplugs Here From Amazon

“If you don’t follow the written guidelines the Air Force provides, you are at risk for hearing loss. It can be minimal or complete hearing loss,” Mississippi National Guardsmen Angel Padilla said.

Spankovich said fireworks damaged his hearing.

“I actually incurred a hearing loss from setting off fireworks in one ear,” he said.

Once the hearing is lost it is permanent and his hearing continues to worsen with time, Spankovich said

Experts have some advice to follow before you light firecrackers to celebrate Independence Day.

“Keep the (fireworks at a) distance (away), utilize hearing protection devices and that’s going to be your best way of diminishing risk. The other option is finding fireworks that produce less of a bang,” he said.

Also remember once the fireworks are used and are no longer active, make sure you place them in a bucket of water to soak for several hours.

Student Parties Are Too Loud!

Student Parties Are Too Loud!

Student parties too loud and can cause permanent hearing loss in teenagers

Student PartiesThat is the plea from irate residents who are fed up with rowdy students that have “infiltrated” the area.

Karen Morewood, the spokesperson for a local community group named ‘Help Scottsville’, said she was forced to call the police to intervene when students became unruly late at night at one of the student parties.

“We cannot sleep at night and our area is no longer safe. We have had students parked outside our homes, drinking alcohol and playing loud music until the early hours of the morning,” she said.

If You Go To Parties Like This Then You Should Use Earplugs

Morewood said she believed that most of the “students” that hang around in the area “do not even live here”.

“There are house parties almost every weekend and students who probably do not even live here attend the parties. We cannot sleep and rest in peace because of the noise,” she said.

Noisy Student Parties

Noisy Student Parties

Morewood said she represents more than 30 families who live in roads around the University of KwaZulu Natal and other tertiary institutes. “The number of families living in Scottsville has reduced drastically. In Pepworth Road there are just two families who live there and the rest are student digs. When it is time to oppose digs being built we are outnumbered,” Morewood said.

If You Go To Parties Like This Then You Should Use Earplugs

She said families had reported the excessive noise, litter, outdoor drinking and burglaries that besieged the area since the increase of student digs.

“My husband and I bought in Golf Road in 2008 and it was going to be our ‘long-term’ home until our children finished school. We are now forced to reconsider our situation, as we feel we are being forced out of the area by constant noise, filth and increased crime. This was not part of our long-term plan,” Morewood said.

The Help Scottsville group said they feel the municipality has “dropped the ball” with regard to enforcing the by-laws.

Another resident from the group, who asked not to be named, said they would do whatever they could to avoid the establishment of more student digs.

“We do not want our children to grow up in this environment,” he said.

If You Go To Parties Like This Then You Should Use Earplugs

“While one understands that the university has a severe housing shortage, it is not the responsibility of the ratepayers of Scottsville to have to put up with the noise and mess that goes hand in hand with a digs or boarding house,” said another resident.

Msunduzi municipal acting spokesperson Nqobile Madonda said they were aware of the issues relating to student accommodation in Scottsville.

“There are mechanisms in place to address this, as contravention notices are issued for the illegal usage of houses for student accommodation,” she said.

Madonda said the municipality are also in the process of developing a policy that will guide the establishment of student accommodation throughout the municipal area.

“Interested and affected parties together with the general public will be involved in this process in due course,” she added.

Kailene Pillay

If You Go To Parties Like This Then You Should Use Earplugs

Noise Hazard Alert

Noise Hazard Alert

noise-hazard-alert

noise-hazard-alert

Noise Hazard Alert Information

Noise-induced hearing loss is one of the most common work-related illnesses in the United States. Each year approximately 22 million U.S. workers are exposed to noise loud enough to damage their hearing.

Through the appropriate use of personal protective equipment such as hearing protection, separating workers from noisy equipment or processes as much as possible and by implementing “buy quiet” programs, employers can reduce the risk of hearing loss for workers.

As part of the effort to raise awareness of noise hazards and steps contractors can take to protect their employees from job-related noise induced hearing loss, the OSHA-NIOSH-CPWR r2p Working Group developed a new series of infographics. These infographics aim to raise awareness of the risk, offer steps to prevent hearing loss and raise awareness about NIOSH’s Buy Quiet resources. Built off of the NIOSH Buy Quiet video and data in the Center for Construction Research and Training’s (CPWR) Construction Chart Book, the infographics reinforce the message that hearing loss can be prevented.

CPWR offers for public download both a noise hazard alert and a toolbox talk on noise hazards, (and you can order the hazard alert in printed brochure format at no charge).

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Go A Day Without Hearing

Go A Day Without Hearing

Imagine What It Would Be To Go A Day Without Hearing

go-a-day-without-hearing-1One day without sound once a year, the Miracle-Ear Foundation asks people to spend a day as if sound didn’t exist, so they can discover its importance in everyday life.

A child’s laughter. Birds singing. A favorite song on the radio. They’re all simple sounds we likely take for granted each day.

On May 31, there’s a nationwide challenge to walk in someone else’s shoes and experience what life is like without being able to fully hear the world around us.

The annual One Day Without Sound pledge asks people to wear ear plugs for one day to realize how many of us take our hearing for granted and consider ways to take better care of our ears every day.

 

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Hearing loss affects 48 million adults and children throughout the U.S., so this special day is designed to help us all recognize how precious our hearing is.

ME-Logo_4-Color_forWeb-300x187The Miracle-Ear Foundation started One Day Without Sound in 2014. This annual event gives participants a chance to wear a pair of ear plugs or noise-reducing headphones to find out what life is like for someone with hearing challenges. The Miracle-Ear Foundation is dedicated to helping children and adults with hearing loss. Since 1990, the foundation has helped people who lack the resources for much-needed treatment and care. Through generous donations by local Miracle-Ear hearing care professionals, the foundation gives the gift of sound to qualified applicants.

George, a teacher, explains what it is like to go a day without sound

In truth, in the beginning everything seemed the same. He even started to think that silence could help him concentrate better on his writing.

George then realized something was not right the first time he looked at his phone: four missed calls, and he was an hour late for the day’s first class. The alarm clock and ring tone had done their job, but he hadn’t heard them. He called the university office to tell them he would be there shortly, but he couldn’t grasp what the person on the other end of the line was saying. He resigned to screaming: “I’m coming, classes are on!”, but heard no answer.

Needless to say, the car ride was more boring than usual: he couldn’t follow the broadcasts on the radio as he normally would. Once he arrived at the university, it took him longer than usual to park the car: not hearing the sound of the distance sensor, he had to reverse far more carefully than he had done in years.

When he finally got to the classroom, the first class was over and the students from the day’s second class were already sitting on their benches.
He closed the door, set his bag down on the desk and took his ear plugs out, the noise and the chatter of his students washed over him like a wave.

“This class almost didn’t happen. You can’t imagine how pleased I am to hear you, guys” he began….

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What Is Causing My Ears To Ring?

What Is Causing My Ears To Ring?

Do You Know What Causes Your Ears To Ring? Read on…

tinnitus-hearing-loss1Tinnitus (pronounced tih-NITE-us or TIN-ih-tus) is the name for hearing a sound that is not physically present in the environment. Some researchers have also described tinnitus as a “phantom auditory perception.” People with tinnitus most often describe it as ringing, buzzing, cricket sounds, humming, and whooshing, although many other descriptions have been used. To hear some sound samples access the American Tinnitus Association website, where they have put together files of different manifestations of tinnitus to listen to for education purposes.

Tinnitus is quite common; as many as 30 million Americans have the condition. Of this 30 million, 20% report to be disabled by it. An audiologist may test two people who report identical loudness and frequency of tinnitus yet one person suffers from it and the other barely notices it.  Tinnitus is believed to be caused by inner ear cell damage. Cilia in your inner ear move in relation to the pressure of sound waves. This triggers these cells to release an electrical signal through a nerve from your ear (auditory nerve) to your brain. Your brain interprets these signals as sound. If the hairs inside your inner ear are bent or broken, they can “leak” random electrical impulses to your brain, causing tinnitus.

mag1The important thing to remember about tinnitus is that the brain’s response to these random electrical signals determines whether or not a person is annoyed by their tinnitus or not.  Magnetoencephalography (MEG, for short) studies have been used to study tinnitus and the brain.

MEG takes advantage of the fact that every time neurons send each other signals, their electric current creates a tiny magnetic field. MEG allows scientists to detect such changing patterns of activity in the brain 100 times per second. These studies indicated tinnitus affects the entire brain and helps with understanding why certain therapies are more effective than others.

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Common Causes of Ears To Ring Tinnitus:

  1. Noise exposure. Exposure to loud noises can damage the outer hair cells, which are part of the inner ear. These hair cells do not grow back once they are damaged. Even short exposure to very loud sounds, such as gunfire, can be damaging to the ears and cause permanent hearing loss. Long periods of exposure to moderately loud sounds, such as factory noise or music played through earphones, can result in just as much damage to the inner ear, with permanent hearing loss and tinnitus. Listening to moderately loud sounds for hours at a young age carries a high risk of developing hearing loss and tinnitus later in life.
  2. Medication. Some medications are known to be ototoxic while others list tinnitus as a side effect without causing permanent damage to the ear structures. New medications come out so often that it is difficult to maintain an up to date listing; another option, if you are experiencing tinnitus and are curious if it could be your medication, is to talk to your pharmacist or look up your specific prescriptions online through a website. You should never stop a medication without consulting with your physician, even if you think it may be contributing to your tinnitus.
  3. Age-related hearing loss.
  4. Earwax blocking the ear canal. When too much earwax accumulates, it becomes too hard to wash away naturally, causing hearing loss or irritation of the eardrum, which can lead to tinnitus.

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