The danger of Headphones:Which of the 4 Types are the Most Dangerous?
The music on the headphones does not annoy the neighbors on the trip, even if it sounds at full volume. However, experts began to notice a dangerous trend in large cities – people are increasingly complaining of hearing impairment.
Psychoacoustics know that after attending noisy events (such as rock concerts), the auditory system takes time to recover from the aggressive effects of loud music. And if listening to such “concerts” through headphones happens every day? No recovery period? What harm do headphones do?
The constant loads carried by the eardrums inevitably lead to wear and tear. And doctors with regret admit that acquired hearing loss cannot be cured. How can you avoid this? First, you need to figure out how the sound from the headphones acts on the hearing aid of the music lover.
How does sound work?
The ears, along with the eyes, are tools for receiving and analyzing signals sent by the external environment. They provide protection to a person, warning him with sounds about a change in the situation and the occurrence of danger.
Unlike the eyes, which rest with the eyelids, the ears are always awake. To understand which headphones are harmful to your ears, you need to understand how the ear works.
The human ear is made up of elements, each of which is responsible for the gradual transformation of sound waves into music, speech, or other sounds:
- The sound wave enters the auditory canal through the auricle.
- When it reaches the eardrum, it transforms into vibrations.
- The next organ – the cochlea of the middle ear – converts these vibrations into nerve impulses and sends them to the brain.
- The brain recognizes impulses as certain sounds.
The ear’s defense mechanism consists of muscles that contract the eardrums, minimizing the impact of loud sounds on the inner ear. If the work of these muscles is regularly abused, then their effective protection is reduced.
Muscles become tired and stop responding to stimuli, opening up access to the aggressive effects of high and low frequency sounds to the middle ear. The sensitive cells in the inner ear are damaged, and certain frequencies become inaccessible to the human brain.
It should be noted that the hearing aid is reliably protected from short-term loud exposure, but regular stimulation of the eardrum through a cheap acoustic headset leads to cell death, which cannot be restored.
Is it possible to use headphones for hearing?
This is interesting for many music lovers. Audiologists recommend avoiding loud noise leading to pathological changes in hearing. And digital sound directed directly into a person’s ear can have far more dire consequences than just hearing impairments.
The use of headphones while walking or cycling is a significant hazard. Loud music makes a person vulnerable by drowning out danger signals. Statistics show that due to the fault of pedestrians wearing headphones, the number of accidents has increased significantly. Schoolchildren are particularly affected.
However, older users may suffer from incompatible operation of headphones and pacemakers. Doctors found that in some cases, the incorrect operation of defibrillators and pacemakers was caused by headphones, which deactivated these devices.
You can avoid deteriorating health and at the same time enjoy your favorite music. You just need to buy a good acoustic headset and don’t forget about some simple safety rules:
1.Do not increase the volume to the maximum in noisy places – in the subway, on the streets;
2.Limit daily headphone use to a reasonable period of no more than 4 hours;
3.Take them off before going to bed, do not fall asleep to the music;
4.Use models with active noise cancellation.
How do different types of headphones work?
Mobile device designers are constantly improving the design of headphones, striving to give users the joy of high-quality sound. For the most complete sound, they divide the stereo channels into two headphones and place the sound sources as close as possible to the organ of perception – the eardrum.
When classifying headphones according to the degree of impact on the auditory system, several categories can be distinguished:
Large, massive overlays connected with a thick hoop. This model has excellent sound insulation properties and does not require increasing the volume to the maximum. Audio professionals prefer monitoring devices.
Great option of monitor headphones can be Audio-Technica ATH-M70x.
Audiologists consider them the least harmful, but young people do not really like these models, considering them cumbersome and inconvenient. Nevertheless, it is these headphones that are the least damaging to hearing.
Structurally similar to the previous model “modeling’, these headphones also transmit sound to the ears. Best Example: Sony MDR-ZX660AP mic Black.
However, despite the more elegant dimensions, the headphones are not very much in demand among music lovers because of the rather weak sound insulation.
Known to absolutely any owner of a mobile gadget – almost all players and smartphones (such as Philips SHE4205BK / 00 Black) are equipped with such headphones.
The sound wave here is directed into the ear canal, bypassing the shell. Despite the fact that sound enters the tympanic membrane, reflecting off its walls, incomplete sound insulation forces the volume to increase, which can have a damaging effect on the ear.
It is not difficult to avoid this – you need to purchase high-quality headsets and adhere to the manufacturer’s recommendations for the volume level and duration of listening to music.
Plugged into the ear canal, the vacuum models completely seal it off and isolate it from ambient signals. The boosted bass generated by vacuum earbuds is especially popular with teenagers.
If you listen to music in these at maximum volume, then a powerful concentrated sound will deliberately beat on the eardrums, causing damage to the auditory and nervous system.
The cells of the inner ear under the influence of resonant aggressive vibrations will experience constant overload and, if this lasts long enough, will gradually be damaged. Good earbuds (such as the Monster NLite Black) always come with instructions from the manufacturer indicating the recommended safe use times and acceptable sound levels.
When asking which headphones are the most dangerous, we can conclude that hearing damage with this type of headphones is high if the headset model is of poor quality or the user thoughtlessly increases the volume to the maximum.
In general, it is not worth talking about the dangers of a particular type of headphones – here the person’s attitude to his hearing plays a role.
Reasonable and correct use of a vacuum headset does not cause a damaging effect on the auditory system, and it can also receive a crushing blow from unjustifiably loud music from stationary acoustics.
If you consciously assess the risk of loss of health from excessive enthusiasm for rumbling music and understand what really dangerous headphones are, then you will not have a future problem with your hearing.
Moreover, there is always the opportunity to enjoy music in a different format – at home through an audio system or at a live concert.