Which Everyday Sounds May Put Your Kid's Hearing at Risk? [Infographic]

by ParentCo. September 05, 2017

young boy listen music with headphone

The loudest sound accurately measured by humans was caused by the explosive volcanic eruption of Indonesia's Krakatoa Island on August 27, 1883.

Krakatoa's blast registered at 173 decibels 100 miles away from the volcano – which, even at that distance, is substantially above a human's pain threshold.

This mammoth instance of noise is a rare anomaly. However, consistent exposure to everyday sounds – subways, music, sporting events, lawn mowers, traffic, vacuums, even babies crying – can slowly damage our hearing. See how these, and other common sounds, affect your hearing in the infographic below.

About 1/6 of teens and adults have hearing loss, and 12.5% of children have dulled hearing in one or both ears.

*Source °Source

It's unrealistic to think we can sterilize these noises from our lives. But we can take steps to protect our hearing, and especially the hearing of our children and infants when possible. Many devices we use today have the ability to reach noise levels 100 times more intense than the level at which hearing damage begins. Babies and children are at a higher risk for hearing damage because their shorter ear canals amplify sounds more than an adult ear. Teach children to turn down music, move away from extremely loud sounds, and wear hearing protection to events with sustained periods of noise. 

Small ears can perceive sounds to be up to 20DB louder than adults due to their shorter ear canals

The mechanics of hearing

Sound waves cause your 1 eardrum to vibrate ? this vibration travels through the 2 three small bones of your middle ear ? is converted from air vibrations into fluid vibrations within the cochlea ? the fluid of your 3 cochlea causes small hair-like projections, called stereocilia, to sway with the vibrations ? the swaying of the stereocilia sends signals to the brain which are translated into a noise. 

Parent Co. partnered with Ems for Kids because they believe every parent should know what risks they’re taking.

Everyday sounds that can damage our hearing.

Everyday sounds that are fairly safe for our ears.

Three ways to protect your hearing

1 Wear protective earmuffs at loud events

Protective earmuffs can reduce a sound's intensity by 25 DB.

2 Limit your exposure time

Sounds that register above 85 DB can damage our hearing. Sound intensity doubles with every 3DB increase.

Permissible time before hearing damage begins

3 Move away from the noise

You will reduce noise pressure levels by 75%, or 6 DB, every time you double your distance from a sound.


Parent Co. partnered with Ems for Kids because they believe every parent should know what risks they’re taking.



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