We live in a tech-driven society. Like nearly everything else, headphones have evolved in design, portability, and sound delivery methods, so we’ve come to rely on them when we want to make the commute less stressful, pump up our adrenaline for a good workout, or zone out when coworkers are getting a little too chatty.
With convenience comes concern, however. Studies have suggested that excessive or improper use of headphones can lead to issues like hearing loss and ear infection. Does this mean that you have to cut back on your listening time or exchange your beloved ear buds for a bigger, bulkier headset?
Not exactly. Healthy headphone use, which includes safe sound levels, regular breaks, and proper equipment maintenance, can let you safely enjoy your tunes and podcasts and participate in virtual meetings without worrying about how your hearing will be affected in the future. In this blog, the team at All in Audio will share some tips for enjoying your audio the right way.
Balance sound volume with listening time
Personal listening devices like headphones are tuned to a maximum volume of 105 to 110 dB, and exposure to sound levels above 85 dB (think leaf blower or lawnmower) for more than two hours could potentially cause ear damage. Sound less than 70 dB is unlikely to cause any problems, so keep the volume as low as possible and, if you need higher sound levels to power your workout, limit your listening time.
Sharon A. Sandridge, PhD, Director of Clinical Services in Audiology at the Cleveland Clinic, recommends that volume level and length of listening be carefully balanced. In her opinion, you should listen at 80% volume level for no more than 90 minutes at a time. After that point, the longer you listen, the lower the volume should be.
Invest in quality headphones
This is where you shouldn’t be afraid to treat yourself a little. Higher-quality earbuds and headphones are designed to deliver a better quality sound, so you don’t have to rely on volume levels for good fidelity.
We recommend the following:
- HiFi Stereo Foldable Bluetooth Headset with Microphone Support SD Card for PS4: If you’re a hardcore gamer or simply enjoy a more power in your tuneage, these wireless, noise-cancelling earphones provide a next-level listening experience that doesn’t require you to pump up the volume. They’re also comfortable yet snug enough to cancel out background noise when you’re trying to concentrate.
- IKOLE TWS Earphones: If you’re a big fan of earbuds, this high-tech yet discreet set combines HiFi quality with 9D stereo to ensure a listening experience that isn’t harsh on the ears.
Keep your headphones clean
Clean headphones mean healthy ears! This is especially true if you use yours while exercising: not only can sweat build up and make the earpieces smell funky, but ear wax can also clog them and impact sound clarity as well as put you at risk for a nasty infection.
Wipe down earpieces with a soft, damp cloth and gently remove stuck-on dirt or wax. It is recommended to use an adhesive like Blue-Tack to remove build-up from the speaker mesh, followed by a careful once-over using a Q tip dipped in rubbing alcohol.
Get some amazing speakers
When it’s time to give your ears a break but you’re still aching for music, have a speaker ready to keep the playlist going! This giant earbud-shaped speaker looks really cool and has four playback modes: Bluetooth, TF card, U disk, and AUX. It even doubles as an FM radio when you’d rather listen to the news instead. If an important call comes in, no problem- the speaker has a high-definition call microphone that lets you answer hands-free.
What’s the bottom line?
While it’s fine to blast your audio once in a while, doing so regularly and for an extended period of time can have a negative impact on your hearing in the long term. When used properly, headphones are a fun and dynamic technology that let you enjoy music, an audiobook, or a podcast wherever you are.
At All in Audio, our audio accessories include headphones, earphones, and speakers that deliver superior sound with a clarity that discourages excessive volume use. Check us out, and if you’ve got questions, please contact us.