Listen Up

Young people who listen to personal music players for several hours a day at high volume could be putting their hearing at risk, warns a study published online in the British Medical Journal. Researchers found that devices such as MP3 players can generate levels of sound directed at the ear in excess of 120 decibels, similar in intensity to a jet engine, especially when used with earphones inserted into the ear canal.

Use of music devices has grown faster than health experts’ ability to assess potential health consequences such as long-term hearing loss, as well as their interference with concentration and performance, especially when driving. Such findings point out that today’s ubiquitous acceptance of technology in our lives must be accompanied by vigorous efforts to understand its impacts on our health and well-being, especially among youth.

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