How noise pollution is ruining your hearing

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  • Published on:  Monday, June 4, 2018
  • Our ears are exposed to dangerous levels of noise every single day.

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    Health organizations warn that continual exposure to noise levels above 70 decibels can potentially damage your ears. And yet we are routinely exposed to noise much louder than that in everyday situations.

    Our world is increasingly noisy and our bars, restaurants, gyms, and streets all produce decibel levels that can cause harm to our hearing in mere minutes.

    Hearing loss is incredibly common and is the fourth highest disability worldwide. One in four American adults shows signs of noise-induced hearing loss, and the problem is only going to get worse.

    While hearing damage is irreversible, it's also completely preventable. Watch for tips on how to protect your ears even in incredibly loud environments.

    For more of Julia's reporting on noise and hearing loss check out her articles:

    To check the noise levels around you download an app like Decibel Sound Meter Pro: is a news website that helps you cut through the noise and understand what's really driving the events in the headlines. Check out

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  • Vox
    Vox  3 months ago +159

    25% of adults in the US show signs of hearing loss. Vox science reporter Julia Belluz explains the steps you can take to prevent it:

    • trainluvr
      trainluvr  3 months ago

      You are not helping, and you have already done damage that will become apparent later.

    • Tech Freak
      Tech Freak  3 months ago

      Max Loh I don't get why that doesn't physically hurt to people.

    • Max Loh
      Max Loh  3 months ago +1

      Nice fear-mongering.
      The decibel threshold is not absolute; it depends entirely on the frequency. High frequencies are the easiest to lose, so when you hear extremely ear-splitting car brakes or loud air hissing out of a bus's brakes then you need to cover your ears. Low frequencies are hardly going to be a problem unless they are of ludicrous loudness. Also, anyone who doesn't cover their ears when a really loud subway gets really loud, cares more about their social image than their hearing ability. Lastly, anyone who cranks their headphones to the max volume or anywhere near it clearly values their music loudness more than their hearing ability. Gee, you don't say, listening at max volume will cause hearing damage. Thanks captain obvious.

    • whiteboyhalf
      whiteboyhalf  3 months ago

      Vox what?? ✋👂

    • wobbly sauce
      wobbly sauce  3 months ago

      Then you blast us with the end clip..

  • Parker Tron
    Parker Tron  19 days ago

    I had to take my earplugs out to listen to this. Cos it's that's noisy where I live that I wear earplugs constantly.

  • Bloody Hell
    Bloody Hell  25 days ago

    I can guarantee my classmates' voices are louder than your average trip to work.

  • GG
    GG  27 days ago

    Tinnitus is just damaged stereocilia sending signals to brain

  • Darth Malgus The Cat

    rock and roll ain't noise pollution!

  • psxman
    psxman  1 months ago

    How many decibels in eating a crouton?

  • Paradoxical Nightmare

    1:19) That's is true and false. While Smartphones can emit 100-115 Decibels,(The True part), your headphones may not. If your headphones are rared at 80 Decibels, no matter how much that phone pushes 115 Decibels, those snazzy headphones of yours still can only output 80 Decibels. Key rule though, Headphones are generally safer than earbuds, which are inserted into the ear canal.

  • Doug Grinbergs
    Doug Grinbergs  1 months ago

    Crazy irony: the guy who said the most feared words in the English language were "I'm from the government and I'm here to help" killed the EPA Office of Noise Abatement and Control. (:-( ONAC could have imposed noise limits on cars, trucks, motorcycles, buses, subways, consumer products and so much more... Alas, ruthless thuglicans killed the U.S. soundscape for generations. (:-(

  • Christopher Yiwei Liang

    You need a sony wh-1000xm2

  • Gilly Tarly
    Gilly Tarly  1 months ago

    I know this is gonna make me more anxious about my everyday life but im still gonna watch cause its vox

  • Vagina Schnitzel
    Vagina Schnitzel  2 months ago

    Let us consider how people bring their babies to fireworks.

  • Rinor Hajdari
    Rinor Hajdari  2 months ago

    Buy the Bose Quite Comfort 35 ii they block all noise bruva

  • Mohd Emir
    Mohd Emir  2 months ago

    hope the subtitles help, I can't hear a thing

  • OnlineCitizenTV
    OnlineCitizenTV  2 months ago

    My roommate alone is responsible for the half of the noises in our city. 90% of those created by his door shutting habits.

  • Andi Syah
    Andi Syah  2 months ago

    How much db is baby crying?

  • usama khan
    usama khan  2 months ago

    check noise doctor

  • Taranchula TV
    Taranchula TV  2 months ago

    is julia sick??

  • 『Aɳԃɾαҽȥ』
    『Aɳԃɾαҽȥ』  2 months ago

    The main reason I show signs of hearing loss is because I am a idiot and forget to turn my volume down after listening to music.

  • Dustin Phillips
    Dustin Phillips  2 months ago

    You forgot to mention tinnitus. People just aren't scared enough of hearing loss to protect their ears. But explain tinnitus to them, and they might take it more seriously. Imagine a high pitch whistle in your head 24/7...for the rest of your life. Not fun. Protect your dang ears.

  • Hitomi Iwahana
    Hitomi Iwahana  2 months ago

    How much decibel has a phone that is cranked up so high so that it's juuust before that hearing damage warning comes up? (I use a Samsung phone)