19 May 2020

High prevalence of tinnitus among people in the music industry

Tinnitus is almost twice as common among people who work in the music industry as in people who work in finance, a study finds.

A British study has found that tinnitus is almost twice as common among people in the music industry compared to people who work in more quiet industries such as finance. Tinnitus is a serious problem for music industry workers. The odds of reported tinnitus were 1.99 times higher in the music industry compared with the finance industry.

Noise exposure was by far the biggest factor for tinnitus for people working in the music industry, including musicians, music directors and production staff for all genres of music.

According to the researchers, previous research has shown that only 6% of musicians constantly wear hearing protection.

Musicians with tinnitus

Many famous musicians have also reported tinnitus such as Liam and Noel Gallagher, Chris Martin, Pete Townshend, Neil Young and Ozzy Osbourne. Tinnitus is also very common among classical musicians.

About the study

The researchers at the Manchester Centre for Audiology and Deafness analysed data in 23,000 people from the UK Biobank. The study also studied general hearing difficulties and looked at other high-risk industries such as construction and agriculture and compared these industries with low-risk industries such as finance.

The prevalence of tinnitus was based on self-reporting by answering the question “Do you get or have had noises in your head (such as ringing or buzzing) or in one or both ears that lasts more than five minutes at a time?”

The study, ”Difficulties and Tinnitus in Construction, Agricultural, Music, and Finance Industries: Contribution of Demographic, Health and Lifestyle Factors”, was published in the journal Trends in Hearing.

Sources: www.theconversation.com and the journal Trends in Hearing

Get news updates from hear-it