In our previous blog, we provided a set of tips to help the hearing impaired hear more effectively during sporting events and gatherings. There are more options than ever to help treat hearing loss; however, the best thing you can do for your hearing health is to use hearing protection. Large sporting events are saturated with noise and can therefore cause a permanent loss of hearing
How loud is too loud?
One of the most common reasons people do not use hearing protection is because they are not aware of the damage being caused. However, sporting events of all types present a threat to your hearing. The following list demonstrates the average level of noise measured at a range of professional sporting events.
|Sporting event type||Noise level in decibel (dBA)||Time resulting in damage*|
|Basketball||99-118||Less than 15 minutes|
|Football||91-81||Less than 2 hours|
|Soccer||100||15 minutes or less|
|Hockey||99-103||Less than 15 minutes|
*Based on lowest number
Though the decibel range is based on the average sound levels, noise can actually be much louder. The loudest football game recorded reached 142.2 decibels. Without protection, those in the crowd experienced a permanent loss of hearing, as sound over 120 decibels can cause instantaneous damage.
As hearing health professionals, we often hear that the noise is “part of the experience.” Patients fear that utilizing hearing protection will distance them from their surroundings, or otherwise dampen their experience. By utilizing custom hearing protection, you can protect your ears from harmful noise and experience sounds at a safe level. Your local Simi Valley audiologist can fit you with a custom earmold, which you can use as an earplug. These earplugs are discrete and fit comfortably in your ears.
Sporting events are thrilling in their ability to sweep the audience away in a moment, but don’t let that moment cause lasting damage to your hearing health. By investing in customized hearing protection, your ears will benefit for years to come.