“If I can hear it, it’s too loud”. It seems that every one of us have either given, or been on the receiving end of, this piece of advice.
Yet, how important is this nugget of modern-age wisdom? Well, it seems quite important. According to a 2010 Journal of the American Medical Association analysis, substantially more teens are affected by hearing loss nowadays when in comparison to the 1980’s, whilst a 2015 WHO report found that almost 50% of teens and young adults aged 12-35 are exposed to unsafe sound levels through their personal audio devices, such as those found in smartphones and their wireless or wired earphone counterparts.
With unsafe levels of noise (generally categorized as being >80dB – equivalent to heavy traffic or a loud restaurant) leading to hearing loss, it is necessary to note that even minor auditory impairment in school children can catalyze the need for speech therapy and auditory training.
As such, to avoid this sensory catastrophe, experts recommend listening to music at a level of 60% of the device’s full capacity, whilst also being aware of entering loud spaces without the necessary protection.