Younger people can suffer from industrial deafness too
The majority of noise-induced hearing loss claims that we deal with are on behalf of older members of the community. This is because older people are more likely to suffer from the disease but it may not be for the reasons you think. It’s true the hearing deteriorates as we get older but age isn’t a factor at all when it comes to noise-induced hearing loss, sometimes called industrial deafness.
The reason that older people are more likely to suffer from this form of deafness is because health and safety laws were relaxed during their working lifetime, not their age. This can be evidenced by the number of new cases of noise-induced hearing loss halving in a 10 year period. However this doesn’t mean that adolescents and young adults don’t also suffer from the disease.
The World Health Organisation estimates that 1.1 billion young people are at risk of hearing loss caused by unsafe listening practices.
Experts are concerned that young people are unaware of the risks of developing hearing loss and thus subject themselves to loud noise for entertainment purposes. For example, busy nightclubs and listening to loud music through earphones.
In work, despite health and safety laws getting an overhaul, many young adults are still at risk of developing industrial deafness as a result of their job.
Factories, workshops, bars, restaurants and the armed forces are common noisy workplaces for today’s young adults.
Again, due to ignorance on the subject, younger people may not realise their work environment is too loud and won’t exercise their legal right of asking their employer to make relevant corrections. It’s been suggested that because of their age, some younger people exposed to loud noise falsely believe their hearing will not be adversely affected and will therefore decline to wear hearing protection even when it’s provided to them. In part, this is due to the stigma or comfort levels of utilising ear defenders or ear plugs. Unfortunately, when noise levels reach 85+ decibels there could be damage occurring within the ear without you even knowing until it’s too late.
The take home from this is simple - Young adults should protect their hearing when possible and try not to underestimate the long term damage that can happen to their hearing.
Work in a loud environment? We compiled a list of 5 indicators of noise-induced hearing loss. You can read them here.
We specialise in getting sufferers of industrial deafness the compensation that they deserve. If you would like to learn more about our occupational deafness service click here, or contact us for a free no obligation discussion on how we can help if you think you have been affected by it.