CDC Grand Rounds: Promoting Hearing Health Across the Lifespan

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CDC Grand Rounds: Promoting Hearing Health Across the Lifespan

Tue, 03/06/2018

Globally, one in three adults has some level of measurable hearing loss, and 1.1 billion young persons are at risk for hearing loss attributable to noise exposure. Although noisy occupations such as construction, mining, and manufacturing are primary causes of hearing loss in adults, nonoccupational noise also can damage hearing. Loud noises can cause permanent hearing loss through metabolic exhaustion or mechanical destruction of the sensory cells within the cochlea. Some of the sounds of daily life, including those made by lawn mowers, recreational vehicles, power tools, and music, might play a role in the decline in hearing health. Hearing loss as a disability largely depends on a person’s communication needs and how hearing loss affects the ability to function in a job. The loss of critical middle and high frequencies can significantly impair communication in hearing-critical jobs (e.g., law enforcement and air traffic control).

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