Category: Hearing Loss

Dispelling Myths to Make Healthy Hearing a Reality

This World Hearing Day, March 3, 2024, the World Health Organization is promoting awareness of hearing loss to reduce societal misperceptions and stigma and is encouraging you to do the same. Over 80% of ear and hearing care needs are not met worldwide.[1] Hearing care has an annual cost of nearly $1 trillion (US) globally.[2] Read More >

Posted on by Thais C. Morata, PhD; Christa L. Themann, MA, CCC-A; Asha Brogan, MS1 Comment

Changing Mindsets on Hearing Disorders Associated with Work Hazards

  The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health’s (NIOSH) Hearing Loss Prevention Program has been an official member of the World Hearing Forum (WHF) since it was launched in 2019. The Forum was assembled by the Office of Ear and Hearing Care of the World Health Organization to promote ear and hearing care worldwide. Read More >

Posted on by Thais C. Morata, PhD; Christa L. Themann, MA, CCC-A; Shelly Chadha, MD2 Comments

Workplace Safety and Health in a Barbie World

As the occupational safety and health community continues to combat very real and serious hazards, we are closing out the summer with a little fun. This summer Barbie and friends have recaptured national attention breaking box office records with movie ticket sales exceeding one billion dollars in just a few weeks. While Barbie’s first “job” Read More >

Posted on by Stephen Leonard, Julie Tisdale-Pardi, Tanya Headley3 Comments

Sharing quality information on all things related to hearing: Wiki4WorldHearingDay2023

Background The U.S. workforce is ethnically diverse. Lack of safety and health training and language barriers are among the most frequently cited challenges companies face in promoting safety among immigrant workers (Flynn, 2014). Contributing quality, plain language health information in multiple languages to Wikipedia increases its accessibility and reach. Unaddressed hearing loss is a serious Read More >

Posted on by Thais C. Morata, Lillian Jacob, Fernanda Zucki, João Alexandre Peschanski, and Shelly Chadha.2 Comments

A Case Study to Demonstrate Noise and Ergonomic Issues in the Workplace

October is National Protect Your Hearing Month and National Ergonomics Month.  Lacey is a veterinary technician who recently started working at a local veterinary clinic that cares for small pets. The clinic sees animals for routine visits but also provides specialty services like general surgery, dental care, grooming, and boarding services. Lacey loves working hands Read More >

Posted on by Emily Kirby, BPHLeave a comment

Save Your Hearing Day

The blog content comes from the NIOSH Manufacturing Mondays seminar series. Today is National Save Your Hearing Day. Hearing loss is one of the most common work-related illnesses. [1] About 12% of U.S. workers have hearing difficulty. [2] Among noise-exposed workers, 23% have hearing difficulty compared to 7% of non-noise-exposed workers. [3] Twenty-four percent of Read More >

Posted on by Elizabeth Masterson, PhD, CPH, COHC; Thais Morata, PhD; Amanda Azman, Au.D; RJ Matetic, MS, PhD; Adam Smith, PhD; Gary Roth, MS, PhD; Jenny Topmiller, MS; and Richard Current, PE.Leave a comment

NIOSH Noise: A 50-Year Timeline of Research and Intervention

Noise is among the oldest occupational hazards. An 18th century report noted hearing loss among coppersmiths whose “ears are injured by that perpetual din” from hammering on metal.[1] In view of this, noise was among the first hazards NIOSH addressed when the Institute was established in 1971. A dedicated Noise Section was established in Cincinnati Read More >

Posted on by Christa L. Themann, MA, CCC-A; Julie Tisdale-Pardi, MA; CAPT Chucri (Chuck) A. Kardous, MS, PE; Elizabeth A. Masterson, PhD, CPH, COHC; Thais C. Morata, PhD; and CAPT William J. Murphy, Ph.D.2 Comments

Noise Myths Debunked – Fact and Fiction Behind all the Cicada Buzz

This is the first installment of a series of science blogs that will address common myths attributed to noise and hearing loss. For much of the eastern U.S., 2021 has been the year of the cicadas. The Brood X insects have made their presence known after 17 years of living underground, with their characteristic buzz Read More >

Posted on by NIOSH Noise and Bio-Acoustics Team6 Comments

Taking it to the Streets… and the Mines

Two unique NIOSH programs bring vital safety and health screening directly to miners. Mobile Hearing Tests Miners are at increased risk for noise-induced hearing loss from the use of high-powered motorized equipment, air-powered tools, and work involving striking, drilling and digging. To protect workers’ hearing, employers must have a hearing conservation program in place which Read More >

Posted on by Amanda Azman, Au.D; Cara N. Halldin, PhD, MPH; Christopher Parker; and Julie Tisdale-Pardi, MA1 Comment

Protecting Worker Hearing

These days it seems there are so many steps to stay safe from the COVID-19 virus, but we should also remember to remain diligent in our efforts to protect against other workplace hazards. There is a dramatic impact on quality of life associated with worker hearing loss and ‘ringing in the ears’ (tinnitus). Unless precautions Read More >

Posted on by Elizabeth A. Masterson, PhD, CPH, COHC; Amanda S. Azman, AuD; and Travis Parsons, MS2 Comments

Introducing an Occupational Health Resource: The Occupational Noise Job Exposure Matrix

Introduction Noise-induced hearing loss is highly prevalent in the U.S., and noise is increasingly being linked to other non-auditory health effects such as cardiovascular disease, sleep disturbance, and stress. However, our knowledge of noise exposures associated with many U.S. occupations is lacking. To address this issue, researchers used existing resources to develop a first-of-its-kind Job Read More >

Posted on by Rick Neitzel, PhD, CIH and CAPT Chucri (Chuck) A. Kardous, MS, PE5 Comments

Hearing Loss Among Construction Workers: Chemicals Can Make It Worse

Three out of four construction workers are exposed to hazardous noise levels on the jobsite.[i] Noise levels are considered hazardous when they reach 85 decibels or higher. A NIOSH study examining hearing loss across industries found that construction workers have higher levels of hearing loss than workers in most industries.[ii] The highest rates are experienced Read More >

Posted on by Drew Hinton, MS, CSP, CHMM, COHC; CDR Elizabeth Garza, MPH, CPH; Jeanette Novakovich, MA, MS, PhD; Scott Earnest, PhD, PE, CSP; Thais Morata, PhD; and Trudi McCleery, MPH4 Comments

Take Action to Protect Your Hearing

  In the United States, hearing loss is the third-most common chronic physical condition among adults after hypertension and arthritis. About 22 million U.S. workers are exposed to occupational noise each year. About 12% of the U.S. working population has hearing difficulty and around 58% of the hearing difficulty among U.S. workers is attributable to Read More >

Posted on by Amanda Azman, Au.D.1 Comment

The Power of Crowdsourcing Knowledge Through Wikipedia – The Wiki4WorldHearingDay2019 Experience

No matter the country, it can take years for those who suffer from hearing difficulties to seek care. Once they do, there is a low rate of follow-up on recommended interventions, particularly for hearing aids (Wilson et al., 2017; WHO, 2017). Unaddressed hearing loss is a serious and costly problem around the world. This motivated Read More >

Posted on by Thais C. Morata, John P. Sadowski, Chuck Kardous, Jennifer Dawson, John Eichwald, Robert W. Keith and Lisa Hunter2 Comments

Three Tips for Choosing the Right Hearing Protector

We live in a noisy world. Some noises can damage our hearing, leading to hearing loss, tinnitus (ringing in the ears), and difficulty communicating especially in background noise. Permanent noise-induced hearing damage is incurable. If you cannot reduce your noise exposure by turning down the volume, moving away from the sound, or limiting the time Read More >

Posted on by CAPT William J. Murphy, Ph.D., Christa L. Themann, MA, CCC-A,CAPT Chucri (Chuck) A. Kardous, MS, PE, and CAPT David C. Byrne, Ph.D., CCC-A37 Comments

Grounds for Change: Reducing Noise Exposure in the Grounds Management Professions – Part 2

Workers in grounds management professions, which includes landscaping, lawn maintenance and horticulturists, are often exposed to hazardous noise while on the job. Part One of this summer series discussed some of the dangers of noise, including hearing loss, tinnitus (ringing in the ears), and other health issues. In addition to its negative effects on personal Read More >

Posted on by Jackie DiFrancesco BA, COHC; Asha Brogan and Bryan Beamer PhD, PE, CSP1 Comment

Grounds for Change: Reducing Noise Exposure in Grounds Management Professionals – Part 1

While the dog days of summer mean slowing down for some people, sunshine brings the busy season for those in the grounds management professions, which includes landscaping, tree care and horticulture. This summer work means breaking out tools that can create loud noise: lawn mowers, edgers, chainsaws, chippers — just to name a few. This Read More >

Posted on by Jackie DiFrancesco BA, COHC; Asha Brogan and Bryan Beamer PhD, PE, CSP7 Comments

How Can we Measure Impulse Noise Properly?

Impulsive noise is typically generated by the rapid release of compressed gases (impulse) or the collision of solid objects (impact) and is defined as the instantaneous change in sound pressure over a short period of time. Considerable research has shown that impulsive noise is more likely to cause noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL) than continuous noise Read More >

Posted on by CAPT Chucri (Chuck) A. Kardous, MSEE, PE, and CAPT William J. Murphy, PhD

Workplace Noise: More than just “All Ears”

Noise is everywhere, but how loud does it need to be to cause harm? While many people know that loud noise can hurt their ears, they don’t know how loud is too loud or how long they can listen before it becomes harmful. Noise around 85 decibels (dBA) – which is loud enough that you Read More >

Posted on by Ellen Kerns, MPH, CPH, COHC and Elizabeth Masterson, PhD, CPH, COHC10 Comments

Timber, Noise, and Hearing Loss: A Look into the Forestry and Logging Industry

We use our senses for many things. Take away or weaken one, such as hearing, and many things around us begin to change. Unexpectedly, the conversation across the room becomes more difficult to hear. Our favorite song on the radio doesn’t sound quite the same. This can become very frustrating for the person affected. Hearing Read More >

Posted on by Sean Lawson, BS, BA, and Elizabeth Masterson, PhD, CPH, COHC4 Comments