Hearing Protection and Hearing Loss

December 15, 2022

Dr. Jerry Williams of Urgent Care 24/7 discusses hearing protection and hearing loss.

Dr. Williams was at a concert a couple of weeks ago and he noticed some of the roadies and sound professional sound engineers, and some of the staff at the venue were wearing ear protection. It brought up a really important point that Dr. Williams wanted to chat with you real quick about, because those of you who love live music know that some concerts are so loud where your ears literally ring. That's just terrible, terrible for your ears, and leads to long-term hearing loss from exposure to loud noises like that.

If you may have heard Brian Johnson, the lead singer of AC/DC, he has lost so much hearing that he literally can't perform anymore. Huey Lewis from Huey Lewis and the news has lost his hearing. Now, Dr. Williams is not saying and he doesn't know either of these particular singers, medical backgrounds or anything like that, because there are non-noise exposure hearing loss conditions that can happen due to pathology to the ear, the bony mechanism of the ear, the eighth cranial nerve that supplies the nerve to the ear that can make conducts hearing, you can also have neurological brain problems that can affect hearing as well.

He doesn't know about either of these gentlemen. But for example, in the case of Brian Johnson, if you've ever listened to AC/DC's music or if you've ever been to an AC/DC concert, it is a very loud concert. So over time, that kind of chronic, super, super loud exposure can lead to a chronic hearing loss. Also, if any of you out there watching are into firearms, and either competitive or hobby shooting, either for sport or competitive shooting, you'll see that competitive shooters these days skeet shooters trap, etc. Or for people who just enjoy shooting, they wear ear protection, it is critically important.

Dr. Williams can tell you when he was a kid that he did a lot of shooting, and never wear ear protection with rifles and shotguns, etc. So he's sure he has some, some low grade, chronic hearing loss related to both loud music and to firearms. Discharging firearms for many, many years without appropriate hearing protection, well actually without hearing protection of any kind. So let Dr. Williams encourage you to please please, if you're going to allow a music venue or a live music venue, please take air protection. If you're going to discharge a firearm, please take your protection it is critical.

Once you know, once you've been exposed, it's too late. Of course, hearing loss from loud noise in the workplace and in the military, our soldiers who have served and allowed around big guns and discharging firearms. That's a chronic problem that the military is much much more careful about those issues these days than in times past. Again, if you're working around, for example, lawn mower, or loud equipment, like a leaf blower, or in a loud manufacturing environment, of course, you know that if you work in those situations, your employer is, as I'm sure very careful to make sure that you were here protection at all times.

Just be cognizant, because ultimately, you have to take responsibility for your own health in all situations, whether it's on the weekends going out target shooting with your buddies, or whether it's on you know going to a live concert that can be very loud or in the workplace environment. Loud noise chronically or acutely can lead to hearing loss.

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