04 July 2014

Two years of workplace noise enough to damage your hearing

Two years’ exposure to noise in the workplace can lead to clear signs of hearing loss among workers, an Iranian study shows.

Iranian researchers have conducted a two-year follow-up study of tile and ceramic industry workers in Iran. Their study shows a reduced ability to hear among the industry workers, caused by noise in the workplace.

Noise increases the hearing threshold

The researchers studied a population of 555 young workers who were exposed to noise during their eight hour shift. Hearing tests showed that the workers’ hearing threshold had increased during the two years – most frequently observed at 3000, 4000, and 6000 Hz.

The standard threshold shift was observed in 13 (2.34%) in the first year and 22 (3.96%) in the second year in the right ear and 49 (8.83%) and 63 (11.35%) in the left ear of the subjects in the first and second years of follow-up. Most affected were the workers with the highest exposure to noise.

Noise in the workplace increases the risk of hearing loss

A report from The European Union showed that up to 28% of workers are exposed to noise between 85-90 dB. Even though there is currently no cure for hearing loss, it can be prevented; especially hearing loss caused by noise in the workplace.

The Iranian researchers stress the importance of installing hearing conservation programs and the use of hearing protection in the workplace to prevent hearing loss among workers.

About the study

The study was carried out by researchers from Shahid Sadoughi University of Medical Sciences and was published in The Scientific World Journal.

Sources: http://www.hindawi.com/

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