Audiologist: Volume only one factor in hearing loss among young people

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HEARING LOSS

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – Doctors say say newer and better headphones are coming out every year, as their clients become younger and younger.

Parents have been telling their kids to lower the volume for years. Now, doctors say they’re starting to see more of an impact from the use of headphones and ear buds.

“The concern is we’re losing our hearing faster,” says Audiologist Dr. Lara Alessandrelli.

She says it’s not about damaging your eardrum, it’s about damaging the little, hair cells in your inner ear.

“It’s actually nerve damage,” said Dr. Alessandrelli.

Alessandrelli says hearing damage is caused when those cells die, and they don’t come back.

When kids listen to loud music for extended period of time, she says it adds up.

It’s why audiologists are seeing patients starting to show up with hearing damage in their 20’s instead of their 40’s or 50’s. Alessandrelli says that can have a far-reaching effect on your life.

“It really effects your mood, your emotion. It can get to the point where it leads to depression,” Alessandrelli explained.

The solution is, in part, listening at a lower volume. Take the max volume of your device and cut it in half.

The time your kids spend listening also makes a big difference. Even if you can’t get them to cut down on volume, listening less could be a big help.

One thing to keep in mind, because kids’ ear canals are smaller, Dr. Alessandrelli says what’s coming through their headphones is even louder for them than it is for you.

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