General Question

bkburbo's avatar

Will iPod earbuds cause widespread permanent hearing loss for our generation down the road?

Asked by bkburbo (251points) September 16th, 2008

Or other symptoms? I use mine every day but has anyone noticed any hearing loss or other symptoms as a result of using these things?

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

9 Answers

syz's avatar

There seems to be quite a bit of research out there suggesting as much. Of course, it’ll be a slower process than the one that’s ruining the hearing of all of the teens and 20 somethings that dive through my neighborhood and shake my pictures off the walls with their sound systems.

shilolo's avatar

Speak up…

richardhenry's avatar

My hearing is okay, but I only occasionally listen to music obscenely loudly. It has to be something amazing.

It’s worth noting that Apple didn’t invent headphones, by the way… this could apply to any audio player.

loser's avatar

Hearing loss would really be the doing of anyone who cranks their tunes up too high.
I know that when I wear mine for extended periods of time I get runny goop in my ears for a few days. I don’t love that part. I wonder if anyone will study runny goop?

marinelife's avatar

Like all things, it depends. Here is some information about safe volumes and exposure times:

“Very few documented cases of noise-induced hearing loss are tracked to long-term use of handheld stereos alone, but more research is needed, Fligor says.

Fligor is researching safe-listening levels in MP3s. He and colleagues published a study in 2004 that determined safe-listening levels with portable music players such as the Sony Walkman; the study found that one hour a day at about 60% volume was safe. Preliminary results of the MP3 study show figures in the same ballpark, he says.”

To answer your actual question as posed without the details. No, but I am very worried about what tuning out of real life for hours and hours will do to people and a whole generation. When you have your ear buds in, you cannot hear wind, rain, birds, insects singing, the sound of water or waves. I think the psychological consequences are likely to be much more severe than just the deafness, although that’s not minor either.

iwamoto's avatar

the ipod has a volume lock, my favorite feature, that way i’ll never turn it too loud, so it’s also in the hands of the user, and kids these days are just retarded, at a concert “can i offer you guys some earplugs as well ?” “no, my hearing’s too far gone anyway..” or “no, that way i won’t be able to hear the music” ... idiots…

wundayatta's avatar

I just love it, riding in an elevator, and I can hear someone’s IPOD as plain as day. Granted, I have sensitive ears, but still, that’s ridiculous, and has got to be damaging a person’s hearing.

I went to my first pop concert in 20 years, and despite having earplugs, the volume was so loud, it was painful Why?

gooch's avatar


loser's avatar


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