30 June 2020

German adolescents risk their hearing

Lower education and being male increases the amount of risky noise exposure, a study finds.

A German study finds that risky exposure to total leisure noise and portable listening devices is associated with lower education, single parent households and being male. Risky portable listening device exposure was also associated with a migrant background.

In the study, up to 73% of the students exceeded noise levels of 85 dB(A) at some point.

Noisy habits change with age

The noise exposure and importance of different leisure activities changed with increasing age from listening to music on stereo equipment and listening to portable listening devices to going to discotheques.

The aim of the study was to investigate leisure noise exposure and sociodemographic determinants of risky leisure activities. The study measured noise exposure in 18 different leisure activities among 2,148 students by visiting grade 9 of any school type in a German city from 2009–2011. Risky exposure was defined as exceeding 85 dB(A) averaged over a 40 hour week.

The study, “Longitudinal analysis of leisure noise exposure among adolescents with special focus on portable listening devices: the OHRKAN cohort study”m was published in the International Journal of Audiology.

Sources: www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov and the International Journal of Audiology

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