Approximately two million workplace injuries are documented every year. Normally, we think about a hand caught in a piece of machinery or a flying projectile when we consider work-related injuries.
But the most common workplace injury is far more pernicious and often goes unreported. Over a few years, it will sneak up gradually on people. Most individuals don’t even detect it’s happening until it becomes severe. People typically make excuses. “It’s just part of the aging process” or “It’s a short-term issue”. This isn’t unusual.
And it’s unusual for people to even acknowledge that their workplace is to blame for this injury.
Hearing damage is this insidious injury. There are some essential steps you should take if you detect any of the numerous warning signs.
How Loud is Too Loud?
Continual exposure to sounds above 85 decibels (dB) can result in permanent damage to your hearing. For reference, a vacuum cleaner runs at around 75 decibels dB. Eighty-five dB for a lawnmower. If you’re exposed to a chainsaw or leaf blower you’re dealing with 100 dB. And the volume of a gunshot logs in at 140 dB.
Are you at risk when you’re at work? Are you being exposed to the most prevalent workplace injury? If you’re regularly exposed to something as loud as a lawnmower, even if it’s not continuous, your hearing can become damaged over time.
Hearing Injury Signs
If you work in a loud environment, there’s no doubt you’re harming your hearing.
Your experiencing hearing loss if you notice any of the following symptoms:
- Conversations sound muffled.
- You hear ringing, hissing, or whistling when it should be quiet.
- consonants get confused – “Todd” sounds like “Dodd,” for instance.
- When you talk with people you always think they are mumbling
- When people speak, you tend disengage.
- Loud noises cause pain in your ears.
- You frequently ask people to repeat themselves when they talk.
- Your family and friends tell you your television, radio, or computer tablet volume is too high.
- You can’t understand the person speaking if there’s background noise.
What Are Employers Doing to Reduce Hearing Damage?
Businesses and organizations are working with the latest technology to lessen workplace noise in overly loud settings. Workplace noise will be lessened as new guidelines are being put in place by governments to protect workers.
As more employees become aware of the recurring damage they have endured as a consequence of workplace noise, they are speaking out. Further change will come as their voices are heard.
Preventing Additional Damage
Safeguarding your ears before they become damaged is the best plan if you work in a loud environment. Potential damage will be decreased by using protective earmuffs or earplugs.
Make an appointment for a hearing test right away if you believe a noisy workplace has caused damage to your hearing. You will learn how to counter further damage when you find out how much hearing damage you have. We can help you develop strategies to prevent additional hearing loss and address the damage you’ve already experienced.