Study: Over 1 Billion Young People Potentially At Risk Of Hearing Loss

Researchers examined studies from 2000 to 2021
SAN FRANCISCO, CA - SEPTEMBER 07: A pair of the new Apple AirPods are seen during a launch event on September 7, 2016 in San Francisco, California. Apple Inc. unveiled the latest iterations of its smart phone, the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus, the Apple Watch Series 2, as well as AirPods, the tech giant's first wireless headphones. (Photo by Stephen Lam/Getty Images)

At a glance

  • A study published in BMJ found that an “estimated that 0.67–1.35 billion adolescents and young adults worldwide could be at risk of hearing loss from exposure to unsafe listening practices.”
  • Throughout a 40-hour work week, recommended noise limits are no higher than 85 decibels, however, young people between the ages of 12 and 35 using cell phones, MP3 players, and other devices listened to content at 105 decibels.
  • According to the researchers, “Damage from unsafe listening can compound over the life course, and noise exposure earlier in life may make individuals more vulnerable to age-related hearing loss.”

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