Music and Hearing Protection: A Call to Action Millions of people are exposed to loud music, either as musicians or as recreational consumers of music. Audiologists are in the best position to address hearing conservation problems for musicians and music listeners. However, the issue of music-induced hearing loss (MIHL) has unique challenges. Specifically, estimates of the size of ... Article
Article  |   May 01, 2009
Music and Hearing Protection: A Call to Action
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Jeremy Federman
    Department of Hearing and Speech Sciences, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN
  • Erin Picou
    Department of Hearing and Speech Sciences, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN
Article Information
Hearing Disorders / Articles
Article   |   May 01, 2009
Music and Hearing Protection: A Call to Action
Perspectives on Audiology, May 2009, Vol. 5, 3-9. doi:10.1044/poa5.1.3
Perspectives on Audiology, May 2009, Vol. 5, 3-9. doi:10.1044/poa5.1.3
Abstract

Millions of people are exposed to loud music, either as musicians or as recreational consumers of music. Audiologists are in the best position to address hearing conservation problems for musicians and music listeners. However, the issue of music-induced hearing loss (MIHL) has unique challenges. Specifically, estimates of the size of the populations have likely underestimated the number of musicians at risk for MIHL. In addition, performance levels for musicians have been measured to be as loud as 109 dBA, and both professional and recreational listening devices can deliver sounds as loud as 130 dBA. However, compliance with conservation recommendations remains poor for a variety of reasons, despite increased awareness through educational campaigns. Moreover, methods to mediate exposure have had limited successes for both groups. The purpose of this paper is to assess the scope of the problem and the successes of current conservation strategies with the aim of inspiring renewed interest and solutions to the problems helping musicians and consumers protect their hearing.

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