When you were a kid you probably had no clue that turning up the volume on your music could result in health problems. You were simply having fun listening to your tunes.
As you got older, you probably indulged in nights out at loud concerts or the movies. You might have even picked a career where loud noise is normal. Long term health concerns were the furthest thing from your mind.
Now that you are older and more mature, you probably know better. Noise-induced hearing loss can show up in children as young as 12. But sound is so powerful it can actually be used as a weapon.
Can You Get Ill From Sound?
In fact, it Can. It’s apparent to doctors and scientists alike that specific sound can make you sick. This is the reason why.
How Health is Impacted by Loud Noise
The inner ear can be damaged by really loud sounds. After sound passes through the membrane of the eardrum it’s picked up by little hairs in the ears. These hairs never regenerate once they are destroyed. Many people, as they age, deal with sensorineural hearing loss caused by this.
Dangerous volume starts at 85 decibels for an 8 hour time frame. If you’re exposed to over 100 dB, lasting damage occurs within 15 minutes. A rock concert is around 120 decibels, which causes instant, permanent harm.
Noises can also affect cardiovascular health. Obesity, high blood pressure, clogged arteries, and other vascular issues can be the outcome of increased stress hormones brought on by overly loud noise. So when individuals who are subjected to loud noise complain about memory loss and headaches, this may explain why. Cardiovascular health is strongly linked to these symptoms.
In fact, one study revealed that sound volumes that begin to affect the heart, and hormones are as low a 45 decibels. A person speaking with a quiet indoor voice is at this volume level.
Your Health is Impacted by Certain Sound Frequencies – This is How
Several years ago, diplomats in Cuba became sick when subjected to sounds. This sound wasn’t at a very loud volume. They could drown it out with a tv. How could it have made people sick?
The answer is frequency.
Even at lower volumes, considerable damage can be done by some high-frequency sound.
Does the sound of nails on a chalkboard make you cringe? Have you ever pleaded with a co-worker to stop as they run their fingers across a folded piece of paper? Have you ever had to cover your ears during a violin recital?
If you’ve felt the power of high-pitched sounds, the pain you felt was actually damage happening to your hearing. The damage could have become permanent if you’ve exposed yourself to this sort of sound repeatedly for longer periods of time.
Research has also discovered that you don’t even have to be able to hear the sound. High-pitched sounds emanating from sensors, trains, machinery, and other man-made devices could be emitting frequencies that do damage with prolonged exposure.
Your health can also be impacted by infrasound which is very low frequency sound. The vibrations can make you feel disoriented and physically ill. Some individuals even experience migraine symptoms like flashes of light and color.
How You Can Protect Your Hearing
Recognize how specific sounds make you feel. If you’re feeling pain or other symptoms when you’re exposed to certain sounds, limit your exposure. Pain is frequently a warning sign of damage.
In order to know how your hearing may be changing over time, contact a hearing specialist for an examination.