One of the most effective ways to stop ears ringing is by not subjecting yourself to loud noises in the first place.
And quite frankly, it doesn’t matter that you might only be in a noisy place for only a couple of hours, the simple fact is that when it is too loud for too long, it most certainly does effect our hearing .
Now if you’re one of those people who has had ringing in your ears after a concert, you’ll recognize this straight away
When you see people coming out of a club or concert after having seen their favourite band or performer, you’ll notice a lot of them will be playing with their ears in a vain attempt to try and stop the high-pitched ringing or humming. It seems like they are trying to get them working again.
Some people describe the noise as like listing to a radio that is not in tune. For other people it seems more like a high-pitched whistle.
However, one thing that will be true, is that those who were closest to the speakers will be ones having greater problems compared with those further away. The hardier concert goers leaving the venue will know that the effects of the loud music will only last for a day or so — in many ways it’s just annoying – and seems not to be anything too serious.
So why does it happen?
Have you ever wondered what it is that causes our ears ring after we’d been to a loud concert or other loud noises?.
Frankly, the answer is not complicated — our ears have been temporarily damaged because we subjected them to a volume of noise far higher than they’re meant to cope with.
This is because when sound enters the ear it causes tiny hairs within the cochlear to vibrate. The nerve cells at the root of these hairs pick up those vibrations and fire nerve impulses that then go through the nervous system and on to the brain which then makes sense of what has been heard.
Damage can occur in two ways.
Firstly, because the level of sound entering the years is so high it has the effect of vibrating the hairs so violently that they become bent or broken.
In the second case, the cells in the nerves at the base of the hair which pick up these vibrations are hugely overstimulated by the sound. Through suffering trauma of this magnitude, the nerve cells start to fire on their own — even without there being any physical stimulation — this sends pulses through to the brain which interprets that as noise and so you get the ringing.
The thing is once you have got ringing in the ears from attending a concert (or from any other loud noise) there is not really a lot you can do about it — you’ll just have to live with it until it goes away on its own.
Under normal circumstances, the hairs within the inner ear that just get bent will straighten themselves out over a period of time. However, if the hairs have been broken, then unfortunately the damage will be permanent. And further exposure will only result in more hairs being broken. If this pattern continues that will lead to an eventual permanent loss of hearing.
Obviously the most sensible answer is not to expose your ears to loud noises but that could mean that you would end up not going out anywhere at all. And anyway, for most people, going to a few concerts a year will not lead to permanent damage with their hearing returning to normal within a day or so.
That said, there are a few things that you can do to help yourself and these measures would be very worthwhile – particularly if you find that your ears are taking longer and longer to come back to normal. the longer recovery period just shows that damage is starting to be done to your hearing and it could become permanent.
If you are a regular concert goer you might notice that now days many people in the audience wear very discreet earplugs. This simple measure means that they can still enjoy going to concerts — experiencing all of the excitement of the music and live performance — simply popping out their earplugs on the way out leaving their hearing still more or less as it should be.
There is something you can do
In fact, it’s not just concert goers that use earplugs nowadays. Although they might be shy to admit it, many band members protect their hearing through the use of discreet earplugs. Which if you think about it is very sensible particularly as they rely on being able to hear and play music in order to make their living.
Whilst it may be tempting to go and sit or stand at the very front of the venue, it also means that you’re right next to the speakers. And frankly giving up the pleasure of the close proximity to the stars or experiencing the thrilling crush of the crowd is probably worth the benefit of keeping your hearing as it should be for a lot longer. And anyway, standing a little way back to means that not only that will you have more room to move, but you’ll also have substantially less noise going in your ears.
But you can guarantee that you’ll still be to hear the band — that’s for sure.
In all of that, while it’s not unknown, it’s fairly rare for people to have permanent hearing damage through just attending concerts. In fact for most people, it would normally take greatly extended exposure to loud noises to cause permanent damage of this type.
However there is one place where historically hearing damage has been a much more frequent occurrence …
The Working Environment
In actual fact, you are more likely to receive permanent hearing damage through being subjected to loud noises at work than you are at concerts. This is because work-related noise is experienced every working day — not just one evening every couple of months.
How loud is loud
A question that people will ask is “how loud is too loud?” Well, as a simple guide, if you’re a metre away from somebody and have to raise your voice or shout in order for that person to hear you, then your environment is too noisy for the good health of your ears. And it’s a medical fact that prolonged exposure to noise louder than 110 dB’s will damage your hearing —and without a doubt, most concerts and many clubs are louder than that.
Just to put things into perspective. Not many of us would enjoy listening to a lawnmower for 3 hours — besides being totally boring as well as noisy, a lawnmower is not actually as loud as the average concert. Whereas in a gig, the noise levels will often be in excess of 110dB’s, the average lawnmower produces only about 85 dB’s. And most government guidelines recommend that we don’t expose ourselves to noises louder than that.
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