Stop deafness: Put warning labels on all head/earphones encouraging responsible listening
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PREMATURE DEAFNESS is now one of the leading health issues in Australia. Premature deafness is on the rise because people, especially young people, are listening to music too loud for too long. We urgently need to increase awareness of the dangers of excessive sound levels. The Government needs to:
- increase awareness of the potential health issues; and
- require consumer electronics companies to put warning labels on all head/earphones encouraging responsible listening.
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We all love our headphones. They offer us privacy and the ability to listen to a wide array of audio on the go. While headphones can allow people to hear near every detail in music, they may not be fully aware of the dangers headphones present. Australian online consumer electronics company, SMATE, is calling upon the Australian Government to make it law that all consumer audio products must carrying warning labels to inform people of the dangers of excessive audio levels.
People are quick to turn up the volume to unhealthy levels in order to block out surrounding noises, but this can cause long term and irreversible damage to the Cochlea. Experts believe that nearly 40% of the hearing loss experienced by people is caused by repeated exposure to loud noise, known as Noise-induced Hearing Loss (NIHL).
NIHL has risen dramatically, with studies claiming that hearing loss has increased over 30% over the last 25 years. Young people are most at risk, with a World Health Organisation studying stating that 50% of young adults are exposed to potentially dangerous music levels from their portable devices. It is believed that one in four Australians will suffer some form of hearing loss by the 2050 due to an ageing population and increased exposure to dangerous leisure noise by younger Australians.
Hearing loss is the second most common health concern experienced by Australians, and is more common than diabetes, asthma and cancer. However, NIHL is preventable. By highlighting the dangers that excessive audio levels present, we can protect the future of Australia’s hearing. The ideal volume levels when listening to audio should not exceed 80% of maximum volume. Some audio devices may prompt the user that listening to high levels of volume can cause irreversible damage, but this is not enough. Education is the best prevention, and with your help we can ensure that Australian’s continue to enjoy their audio at safe volume levels.
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