Re: [AUDITORY] How to speak to people about hearing loss and high sound pressure levels (herzfeld )

Subject: Re: [AUDITORY] How to speak to people about hearing loss and high sound pressure levels
From:    herzfeld  <herzfeld@xxxxxxxx>
Date:    Sun, 13 Oct 2013 10:51:44 -0400

Hi Kevin and list; I'm 81+. When I was 22 (1954) I was inducted into the army, stationed at Fort Dix, and on occasion my platoon camped out at McGuire air force base near the end of one of the runways. During the night when the Jets took off they had their afterburners "on" creating a noise level that actually caused ear pain. Over the last 10 years or so my hearing has degenerated.. You might want to look at the training conditions for the military. Fred. ------------------------------------------------------ Fred Herzfeld, MIT class of 1954 78 Glynn Marsh Drive # 59 Brunswick, Ga. 31525 USA tel: (912) 262-1276 Web: (not up yet) ----- Original Message ----- From: "Kevin Austin" <kevin.austin@xxxxxxxx> To: <AUDITORY@xxxxxxxx> Sent: Sunday, October 13, 2013 1:09 AM Subject: How to speak to people about hearing loss and high sound pressure levels > An on-going topic -- very high level [dB] sounds, hearing > loss, personal and societal responsibility. > > Once or twice a year I am invited and go to an event where > the sustained sound pressure [dB] levels will be in excess > of 95dB, and often into the 105 - 110+ dB range. I am > usually long gone before the levels have drifted up to > this point, however they usually start in the 85-90dB > range. I use a combination of Vaseline [petroleum jelly], > and water- [spit-] soaked paper tissues / Kleenex, to seal > my ear canals. At the last two events I left, about 20% of > the people were babies or children under 7-9. They were > brought close to the speaker stacks, and the younger > children enjoyed playing in front of the speakers. > > My question is not one about NIHL etc, which is > documented, but rather one of how to speak to the people > responsible, before and/or after the event about the > damage that is being caused by these environments. If this > were a work place, there would be laws, rules, regulations > and ways of changing the behavior. In these social > environments, rules and regulations don't apply. And I'm > talking 3 or more hours of continuous 105+dB. > > There are currently two students in our university > electroacoustic studies program who have reported their > hearing condition to me in some detail, along with > audiograms, and possible hyperacusis. Discussing this with > many younger people tends towards the "teenage > invincibility syndrome" [will never happen to me], and in > older people, there is a general ignorance or lack of > understanding, often paired with an attitude that > indicates, "if it really is a problem, there would be laws > about it". There are. But, in my experience, there is a > fundamental ignorance of what happens, and what has been > happening for the past 35 - 40 years. > > As the professionals in the field, what can be done? and > how can it be done? Is it a matter of this "silent > plague", simply eating up the hearing of those who are > under 40 such that they will not be able to hear in 15 - > 25 years. > > Recently, this appeared: > > Thu, 09/12/2013 >>> Blake Wilson, Graeme Clark, and Ingeborg Hochmair were >>> awarded the Lasker Award this week for their >>> contributions to the development of the cochlear >>> implant. The Lasker Award is essentially the American >>> Nobel prize, and this is an incredible recognition of >>> not only the importance of cochlear implant technology >>> but also a much broader acknowledgment of the importance >>> of hearing and communication by the entire scientific >>> community. There will be several events over the next >>> few months building on this recognition with interviews >>> with the Lasker awardees, a dedicated one-hour show on >>> PBS with Charlie Rose and Eric Kandel on hearing, and >>> finally a two-day workshop sponsored by the Institute of >>> Medicine on hearing loss in older adults in January. > > It is noted that this seems to be mostly about > cochlea-based hearing loss in older adults. > > > Other items on stem cell research growing back hair cells > have been seen in the media. However, these reports do not > address a major cause of the problem, exposure to high dB > levels. As I understand it, this developing technology may > have little effect on tinnitus caused by nerve damage. > > Are there ways to have the media take cognizance of and > report on the dangerous environments which persist? > > As professionals, is there any individual or group > responsibility regarding making this better known and the > [likely] consequences more clearly understood? Is this > like the cigarette situation where the 'evil' is not only > socially acceptable, but expected so that the event has > 'street cred'? Club owners and Rave organizers want > blood-letting levels, "because the customers want it". > > > Kevin -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- No virus found in this incoming message. Checked by AVG - Version: 9.0.932 / Virus Database: 3222.1.1/6244 - Release Date: 10/12/13 02:34:00

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Electrical Engineering Dept., Columbia University