Mowers, blowers, mixers and more, landscapers are exposed to a lot of noise. Loud sounds can result in noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL), which can be caused by both a sudden, or “impact,” sound as well as long-term exposure to noise.
Protecting your hearing is important, because once the hair cells in the inner ear are damaged, they cannot grow back, resulting in permanent hearing loss.
Approximately 48 million Americans have some hearing loss. And (listen up, landscapers) one in three of them developed it as a result of exposure to noise.
Dr. Leslie Purcell, an audiologist at Mount Nittany Physician Group, told Centre Daily News that noise is dangerous if:
- You have to shout over background noise to be heard.
- The noise is painful to your ears.
- The noise makes your ears ring.
- You have decreased or muffled hearing for several hours after exposure.
Purcell recommends earplugs or earmuffs as effective protection against NIHL.