Have you ever ridden the bus and heard someone obnoxiously playing their music on their cell phone or whichever musical device for all going to destination x to enjoy? Or simply they don’t care whether you enjoy it or not, ‘cause they’re the boss. I have a newfound tolerance and respect for such people, because as someone pointed out to me, it is no different than those using headphones or earphones who blast their music at the highest decibel level to the point where you can discern every word sung/rapped or yelped by the artist. And at least, it does not damage their hearing.
Our society is going deaf, and hearing loss caused by overly loud music cannot be remedied. Here is the science behind this fact: noise induced hearing loss occurs when the microscopic hairs in the cochlea are damaged. Sound pressure is measured in decibels and once a sound reaches 85 decibels and more, permanent damage can be made. What does 85 decibels sound like? Busy city traffic hits that 85 decibel mark, and the crazy thing is that many people listen to their music at over 100 sound decibels. Busting your tunes at such a high level for as little as 15 minutes can and will seriously impair your hearing. The damage is gradual and you may not even notice it except for the fact that you find yourself progressively increasing the sound level on you music player as you deem the sound to be less loud than before.
Everyone and their grandmas has an Ipod or mp3 player, and it is totally understandable since long rides are indeed tiresome. Quite frankly, sometimes I wish my life had an ongoing soundtrack and I simulate this not so secret wish by listening to music on my Nano as I stroll the streets or ride the bus and metro. Given a certain public transportation etiquette [that most adhere to], it would be unpractical of me to suggest resorting to playing your music sans earphones or headphones. However, you could use headphones instead of earphones. As you can imagine, the sound delivered via in-ear earphones gets the sound closer into your ear and exacts more pressure on it. Also, in the defense of musical ear muffs, they make you look like more of a serious music aficionado. Not to mention, it spices up, and renders hip any outfit. Well, that’s of course, in my opinion.
There are many other factors involved, but I am no expert. What I will say is to limit the amount of time you’re listening to your sound device and make sure that if you’re using earphones that you’re still able to hear the sounds around you. Try buying noise canceling headphones; since outside noises are eliminated, users are less inclined to pump up the volume. The Audio Tecnica is cheaper than many at 99.95$ and is of good quality. Still a bit pricey, at least for me, it’s worth it considering you’ll have a fair shot at maintaining your hearing past the age of 40. Skullcandy and Urbanears also offer some stylish and effective ones at a cheaper price.
Source: Dangerous Decibels
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Image layout: Ashley
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