Musicians at a Greater Risk for Hearing Loss

May 1st, 2014 | by Andreas Seelisch | Hearing Loss

We are used to associating loud music with being a necessary component of the rock star lifestyle. When it comes to music, louder is definitely thought to be better. However, loud music over long periods of time on a frequent basis may cause irreversible damage to your hearing.

According to a recent study released in the Occupational & Environmental Medicine Journal musicians are four times more likely to develop hearing loss than the general population.

The study also found that musicians were 57% more likely to develop Tinnitus, which is characterized by what many describe as ringing in the ears. The sound appears to come from within the body and doesn’t come from an external source. The sounds Tinnitus sufferers hear can also include buzzing, hissing and pulsing.

The study looked at 2000 musicians out of a sample population of three million in Germany. The medical study didn’t differentiate between amplified music (with speakers) and unamplified music.

Musicians performing amplified music are at a greater risk for hearing loss because that music tends to be louder. However, musicians who don’t perform amplified music, such as those who perform in an orchestra, are not immune to the possibility of hearing loss.

Orchestral music usually sits just above acceptable sound levels for humans. So, unamplified music is still a risk because hearing loss is a cumulative disorder, damaging hearing over time with continued exposure at excessive levels.

All musicians are encouraged to protect their hearing. One effective way to do that is with protective in-ear devices in the form of custom moulded musicians’ ear plugs. At Hearing Solutions we’ve helped many musicians protect their hearing, whether they are professionals or not. If you’re a musician looking for a way to protect your hearing and your love of music, registered Audiologists and Hearing Instrument Specialists can help you prevent hearing loss and/or Tinnitus at any one of our Hearing Solutions clinics.


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