Almost 70% of people have been left with ringing in their ears or dulled hearing after a night out
Despite these figures, and the risk of damaged hearing, one in three say they would override the ‘safe level’ warning on their personal music player to listen to loud music. This is according to a poll we carried out to mark Tinnitus Awareness Week (3 – 9 February 2014).
One in ten people across the UK are affected by tinnitus everyday - ranging from a light buzzing to a constant roar in the ears and head - which can have a detrimental effect on quality of life from problems sleeping to being able to concentrate at work.
Paul Oakenfold, DJ and Record Producer, said: ‘I feel passionately about listening to music safely, and urge music lovers to wear ear defenders to gigs and avoid dangerously high volumes on personal music players. Getting decent noise-cancelling headphones also cuts down the risk of damaging your ears and suffering tinnitus caused by over exposure to loud music. No one wants that! So protect your ears whilst loving your tunes!’
The charity’s poll reveals that almost half of people (48%) listen to music for up to a third of their waking day, but worryingly nearly one in five people would not do anything differently to take any care of their hearing even when informed of the dangers.
Chief Executive of Action on Hearing Loss, Paul Breckell, said: ‘Listening to loud music for a long time can trigger tinnitus and is an indication of damaged hearing. Most people have experienced tinnitus, but those who are severely affected can experience fear, anxiety and feelings of helplessness that affect their quality of life. Currently there is no cure for tinnitus; as a charity we are doing all we can to fund research into treatments, and in the mean time offer support to people who suffer.
The poll also revealed that one in ten people do not know what tinnitus is, with some identifying it as “big ears” (3%) and others “a repetitive strain injury” (4%).
You can find out more information on tinnitus and how to get involved in Tinnitus Awareness Week, or call the charity’s free tinnitus information line on 0808 808 0123 and textphone 0808 808 9000.
Gorki Duhra, Senior PR Officer, telephone: 020 7296 8057, out of hours: 07944 038 635 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow Action on Hearing Loss on Twitter @hearinglosspr