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Live music is negatively impacting young people’s hearing, new study suggests

today17/04/2024

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Live music events are having a detrimental effect on young people’s hearing, new research suggests.

The study, conducted by Specsavers, surveyed over 2,000 young people between the ages of 18-44 — finding that nearly half have experienced some hearing loss.

One in 10 respondents said they attend live music once every three months, with over half reporting ringing or muffled ears after events.

A third of young people surveyed said they’d be less likely to attend live music events in the future due to their experiences with hearing damage.

Read this next: Should nightclubs be doing more to protect your hearing?

Despite more young people regularly attending live music events, the study also reveals that the age group rarely wear hearing protection — with a staggering 84% claiming they have never worn earplugs.

The research suggests that more awareness around hearing loss and hearing protection may be needed to tackle to problem, with 14% of respondents in Specsavers study claiming they are “unsure” of where to obtain hearing protection.

Despite countless earplug options on the market, a quarter of respondents reported never having considered purchasing hearing protection before an event.

Loud sound exposure can have detrimental effects on hearing health, including hearing loss and tinnitus. Depending on the decibel levels, hearing damage can begin after just five minutes in a club environment.

Read this next: Why younger ravers are embracing earplugs

Specsavers chief audiologist Gordon Harrison said: “Many people assume that hearing issues only happen in your later years”.

“However, it can affect people of all ages and unfortunately, the longer we leave hearing issues, the worse they can become”, he advised.

Many brands such as Loop and Happy Ears are now targeting young music lovers people through branding and although Gen-Z ravers have been reported as being more receptive to the idea of wearing hearing protection, misconceptions about the necessity of protection still prevail.

Read Mixmag’s deep dive into young people embracing ear protection, here.

Belle Richardson is Mixmag’s Digital Intern, follow her on Twitter.

Written by: Tim Hopkins

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