Hearing is one of the five basic human senses. In other words, the ability to hear is a pertinent aspect of one’s daily living. Without this key ability, one’s quality of life is diminished. Hearing loss not only renders one unqualified to take up certain roles in society, it also causes personal health problems such as depression. And yet, millions of Americans are suffering from various degrees of hearing loss. Worse, a huge chunk of these cases are caused by prolonged exposure to harmful decibel levels while at work. Below, discover 5 careers that cause the most hearing damage.
- Airline mechanics and engineers
Airplanes have huge engines that roar and whizz whenever the crafts are switched on. The average noise output from jet engines when on the runway and during take-off ranges between 120-140db. Needless to say, that is very loud and quite harmful to the unprotected ear. Airline mechanics and engineers are tasked with getting up-close and personal with these engines day in and day out. And although they wear ear protection when working, the continued exposure to harmful decibel levels makes then highly prone to noise-induced hearing loss.
- Night club/concert staff
One of the first things that one thinks of when imagining very loud environments is night clubs and music concerts. Here, large speakers blast away loud sounds for hours on end. On average, noise from a night club or a concert can reach and exceed 120 decibels. Again, this can cause permanent hearing damage very quickly. People who work in such places are exposed to these high sounds for hours and are likely to suffer some level of hearing loss at some point.
- Musicians and music producers
Still on music, musicians and music producers are another batch of professionals prone to hearing loss. Apart from being in night clubs and concerts frequently, these people spend hundreds of hours in music studios every year. And in the studios, they record and listen to music at high volumes almost all the time. And because they need to listen to every bit of the music, they cannot use ear protection. This makes them high-risk targets of harmful decibels.
- Metal fabrication and construction workers
People who work in metal fabrication plants are also heavily affected by sound. This includes both the fabrication crews and the management staff. They are bombarded by sounds of metal being sheared, welded, grinded, punched, metal pipes clanking on the floors, and so forth. And although they use ear protection gear most of the time, they cannot fully escape the negative damage the sound has on their hearing.
- Combat soldiers
One may not guess it at first but combat soldiers are highly prone to hearing damage. Gun shots alone have a decibel reading of about 140. Explosions have a much higher reading while sirens range around 125 dB. Needless to say, soldiers who have been in combat experience a mix of all these loud noises constantly, both on the battlefield and during months and years of training.
If you work in any of these careers or any other field where loud noise is a factor, wear ear protection at all times where possible. If your hearing is already being affected by the noise, thinking about making a change in your line of work might be a good idea.
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