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Could your lifestyle contribute to future hearing loss?

29 Nov 2011

It's well documented that age can contribute to hearing loss, but did you know other factors such as lifestyle choices and noises we experience in our day-to-day lives can too?

Amplifon

It is known that attending loud concerts and festivals and listening to music at high volume through headphones can all result in deterioration of our hearing and now scientists have discovered that how we travel may also have some impact.

An article published earlier this year in theJournal of the Acoustical Society of Americaexplores how motorcycle helmets worn by bikers may contribute to hearing loss because of the way they channel air and noise.

The article "Aeroacoustic sources of motorcycle helmet noise" discusses how the sound of air whooshing over bikers helmets can exceed safe levels, even when they travel at legal speeds, potentially causing damage.

Researchers from the University of Bath and Bath Spa University worked together to replicate the pressures experienced by riders by way of an experiment that involved placing microphones at different points on a helmet mounted on a mannequin, which was then placed in a functioning wind tunnel. The effect of helmet angle and wind speed on the loudness of noise experienced by riders was also investigated.

The study discovered that the area underneath the helmet and close to the chin bar is "a significant source of the noise that reaches riders' sensitive eardrums." It is hoped that future research can be conducted on real-life riders in road situations, with the information being used to design quieter helmets to protect bikers' hearing.

If you think you may have a hearing loss why not take our online hearing check questionnaire or make an appointment to have a hearing test at your nearest Amplifon branch.

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