When you were a kid you most likely had no clue that turning up the volume on your music could lead to health issues. You simply enjoyed the music.
As you grew, you probably indulged in nights out at loud concerts or the movies. You may have even chosen a job where loud noise is the norm. Lasting health issues were the furthest thing from your mind.
You probably know differently today. Noise-induced hearing impairment can show up in children as young as 12. But did you realize that sound is so powerful that it can even be used as a weapon?
Can Sound Make You Ill?
In fact, it Can. Certain sounds can evidently make you ill according to doctors and scientists. Here’s the reason why.
How Loud Sound Affects Health
Very loud sounds harm the inner ear. You have tiny hairs that pick up +
vibrations after they pass through the membrane of the eardrum. These hairs never regenerate once they are damaged. Many people, as they age, deal with sensorineural hearing loss caused by this.
Damaging volume starts at 85 decibels for an 8 hour time frame. If you’re exposed to over 100 dB, long-term damage takes place within 15 minutes. At 120 dB, the volume of a rock concert, immediate, lasting damage will take place.
Noises can also affect cardiovascular wellness. Exposure to loud sounds can increase stress hormones, which can lead to clogged arteries, obesity, high blood pressure, and more. This could explain the headaches and memory issues that individuals subjected to loud noise complain about. These are strongly related to cardiovascular health.
Sound as low as 45 decibels can, as reported by one study, begin to affect your hormones and your heart. A person talking with a quiet indoor voice is at this volume level.
Your Health is Impacted by Some Sound Frequencies – This is How
Several years ago, diplomats in Cuba got sick when subjected to sounds. This sound wasn’t at a really high volume. They could block it out with a tv. So how could this kind of sound cause people to get sick?
The answer is frequency.
High frequency sounds like the one experienced in Cuba can do considerable harm at lower volumes.
Have you ever cringed when someone scraped their nails on a chalkboard? Have you ever begged a co-worker to stop as they press their fingers across a folded piece of paper? Does the shrill sound of a violin put you on edge?
Damage was being done to your hearing if you’ve ever experienced pain from high-frequency sound. The damage could have become permanent if you’ve exposed yourself to this sort of sound repeatedly for longer periods of time.
Studies have also found that you don’t even need to be able to hear the sound. Harmful frequencies can come from many common devices such as sensors, trains, machinery, etc.
Extremely low-frequency sound called “infrasound” can also impact your health. The vibrations can make you feel dizzy and physically ill. Some even experience flashes of light and color that are common in migraine sufferers.
Protecting Your Hearing
Be mindful of how you feel about specific sounds. If you’re feeling pain or other symptoms when you’re around certain sounds, limit your exposure. Pain is commonly a warning sign of damage.
In order to know how your hearing might be changing over time, contact a hearing specialist for an examination.