Hearing loss induced by loud music among musicians of symphonic orchestra
AbstractNoise-induced hearing loss is an important public health issue, especially among musicians who are, more than any other occupation, dependent on their hearing. For them, hearing impairment is due to too loud music, the effect of which, if exceeding the limit depending on the individual sensitivity of one’s ear, can be compared with theeffect of noise on the ear. Risk factors for its development are: the type of musical instrument and sound character, the way of playing, music genre or composition, duration of exposure to loud music, sound source and its distance from the ear, intervals of acoustic stimuli, individual factors and the musician’s position in the orchestra. Hearing impairment is greater at higher frequencies; in pure tone audiogram it is shown as notches between 3000 and 6000 Hz and is most frequent in the wind and brass section. Hearing loss is greater among violinists and typically affects the left ear owing to the sound source proximity and their position in the orchestra. The most common health problems take the form of diplacusis, algiacusis and tinnitus, as exposure to the loud acoustic stimulus above 90 dB(A) cause damage to the inner ear, the so-called acoustic trauma. Use of personal protective equipment among musicians is low especially because of too much high-frequency attenuation and occlusion effect.
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