When you were 16 and turned the radio up to full volume, you weren’t thinking about how this might harm your health. You simply enjoyed the music.
As you grew, you probably indulged in evenings out at loud movies and concerts. It might even be common for you to have experienced loud noise at work. Lasting health problems were the furthest thing from your mind.
Now that you’re older and more mature, you probably know better. Children as young as 12 can have permanent noise-induced hearing impairment. But did you know that sound is so formidable that it can even be used as a weapon?
Can You Get Sick From Sound?
In a word, yes. Particular sounds can evidently cause you to get sick according to doctors and scientists. Here’s the reason why.
How Loud Sound Affects Health
The inner ear can be damaged by very loud sounds. You have little hairs that detect +
vibrations after they go through the eardrum membrane. Once these little hairs are damaged, they don’t ever heal or grow back. Many people, as they age, deal with sensorineural hearing loss caused by this.
Dangerous volume begins at 85 decibels for an 8 hour time frame. If you’re subjected to over 100 dB, long-term impairment takes place within 15 minutes. A loud concert is around 120 decibels, which triggers instantaneous, irreversible harm.
Noises can also impact cardiovascular wellness. Exposure to loud sounds can boost stress hormones, which can result in clogged arteries, obesity, high blood pressure, and more. This might explain the headaches and memory problems that individuals subjected to loud noise complain about. These are strongly linked to the health of your cardiovascular system.
Sound as low as 45 decibels can, based on one study, start to affect your hormones and your heart. A person speaking with a quiet inside voice is at this volume level.
Your Health is Affected by Certain Sound Frequencies – Here’s How
Several years ago, diplomats in Cuba got sick when exposed to sounds. The sound in Cuba wasn’t that loud. It could even be blocked out by a television. So how could this kind of sound cause people to get sick?
The answer is frequency.
Even at lower volumes, significant harm can be done by certain high-frequency sound.
Does the sound of nails on a chalkboard cause you to cringe? Have you ever pleaded with a co-worker to stop as they press their fingers over a folded piece of paper? Does the shrill sound of a violin put you on edge?
If you’ve felt the force of high-pitched sounds, the pain you felt was in fact damage being done to your hearing. If you experienced this for an extended period of time, regularly exposed yourself to it, or were exposed at a high volume, then the damage may have become permanent.
Studies have also revealed that damage can happen even if you can’t hear the sound. Damaging frequencies can come from lots of common devices like machinery, trains, sensors, etc.
Your health can also be affected by infrasound which is very low frequency sound. The vibrations can make you feel disoriented and physically sick. Some even experience flashes of light and color that are common in migraine sufferers.
How You Can Safeguard Your Hearing
Know how certain sounds make you feel. Minimize your exposure if particular sounds make you feel pain or other symptoms. If you’re experiencing pain in your ears, you’re most likely doing damage.
Have your hearing examined regularly by a hearing specialist to understand how your hearing may be changing over time.