How loud do you listen to music on your earphones? If you do so, then stop now! You can develop trouble hearing and it is advisable to quit the habit as soon as possible. City’s top ENT specialists say that prolonged use of earphones can lead to hearing impairments. According to doctors, as earphones produce the sound much closer to the eardrum, it makes the ear cell weak. As a result, a patient starts losing his/her hearing capacity over a period of time.
Dr Ajay Swaroop, Chairman of ENT department at Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, told The Pioneer, Many of my patients who work at BPOs complain of hearing complications due to the prolonged use of headphones/earphones. He said that when a person is exposed to prolonged loud sound/music develops Sensorineural hearing loss. It makes the ear cells weak near the eardrum as patient suffers from temporary hearing loss for some time. The condition becomes worse when the patient continues to use the earphones, said Dr Swaroop.
It may be noted that in India, use of earphones on road, railway tracks and while driving has proven fatal. Health experts are of the view that most of the road mishaps have taken place when a person was using earphones.
Dr Rajeev Gupta, Senior ENT consultant at Uday ENT hospital, said that the current younger generation is not ready to accept that overuse of earphones makes them sick. Even a person becomes psychologically unstable and suffers from irritation in brain, memory loss, lack of sleep, mood swings, headache, etc. Since, there is no awareness among the patients and youth, they are continuously exposed to high decibel sound levels, said Dr Gupta.
Health officials say that music is something which should be soothing to the mind. According to Dr WVBS Ramalingam, Director, ENT department, at BLK Super Speciality Hospital, a person listens to music through earphones for soothing his/her mind. Beyond the permissible limit of 30-40 decibel sound should not be listened, said the doctor.
I have witnessed three cases in youths who suffered from hearing complication due to the prolong use of earphones. During the medication, these three patients told me that their daily routine involves continuous use of earphones. It caused so much exaggeration to their ear cell, that the patients had to be implanted with the hearing aid, said Dr Ramalingam.
Meanwhile, Dr Girish Raheja, Senior Otolaryngologist at Apollo Hospital, said that whenever a patient suffers from temporary hearing defects, he/she has ringing sensations (Tinnitus ) in the ears. It gets exaggerated when a patient gives a poor follow up to the treatment. As a result, in the coming years of life, they tend to become deaf or have to use hearing aids, said Dr Raheja.
As per World Health Organisation data, about 1.1 billion teenagers and young adults worldwide are at risk of hearing loss due to the use of personal audio devices, smartphones, on which they are exposed to dreadful audio levels.