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Also remember once the fireworks are used and are no longer active, make sure you place them in a bucket of water to soak for several hours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

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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The Impact Of Not Protecting Your Hearing From Hearing Loss

The Impact Of Not Protecting Your Hearing From Hearing Loss

The Wisdom Of Protecting Your Hearing From Hearing Loss In The First Place

ProtectYourHearing1Chris Crossen wants to give some advice about protecting your hearing from hearing loss before it is too late. He wants to reach out to tell people about his experiences of losing his hearing. “We’ve gone down probably 40 notches on the TV you know how that goes”, Chris Crossen a patient said. Chris Crossen couldn’t hear sounds like a siren or the TV or worse his kids.

“Not being able to hear all the things that go on or happen in the back seat of a car was a concern to me”, Crossen said.
Crossen finally sought help for his hearing loss after 10 years of stubborn denial. Since getting hearing instruments, he feels it has changed his life.

“Being more alert sleeping a heck of a lot better because I wasn’t spending so much energy during the day trying to hearing so those were big things right there”, Crossen said.

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But getting checked and getting hearing instruments can be costly. Doctor Cheryl Drost says many insurance companies provide help to cover the costs and there is local assistance available. She says you don’t have to spend your life savings getting help.

“The help comes from often is the office you work with to make sure they’re there to support you to show you how to use it re-instruct you if you need help or if you come in to a problem they’re going to be there”, Dr. Cheryl Drost an audiologist said.

protecting-your-hearing-loss-personal-investmentCrossen says it was his best investment. “It’s the best investment I’ve ever made as far as in my health no doubt about it after 4 years of having the hearing instruments”, Crossen said.

And a big part of that includes his Bluetooth hearing instrument which allows hearing from both ears and to be hands-free. Since getting the hearing instruments, 4 years ago, Crossen says his hearing has improved dramatically and the tinnitus has decreased significantly.

Drost says to get checked if you have any signs of hearing loss but recommends anyone over the age 40 to get checked once a year. Medicare also covers diagnostic hearing and balance exams if your doctor or other health care provider orders these tests.

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Should one wear earplugs at night?

Should one wear earplugs at night?

Can I wear Earplugs at night?

sleepless-nightMany people have trouble sleeping at night. They may be very light sleepers, have partners who snore, noisy neighbors or live near a busy street. Regardless of the reason, though, not getting enough sleep can have a negative effect on the overall mental and physical wellness of the individual. Living in such a noisy world, it is no surprise that people start looking for ways to create a peaceful and relaxing environment so they can sleep properly.

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One way to achieve that is using earplugs. Earplugs are a popular solution for blocking or lowering the volume of incoming noise and for protecting the ear from dangerous sound environments such as rock concerts or heavy machinery. However, many people use them during the night to help secure a good night sleep. While earplugs are quite useful, their application should be treated with care as they can cause problems including discomfort and inconvenience. So you should find the earplugs that are most comfortable for you.

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