A love of music can provide a double whammy when it comes to dangerous noise exposure because noise exposure is cumulative. Remember: it all adds up – whether you play it yourself, hear it at a gig, a club or over headphones, it could be damaging your hearing.
Ever wondered what music sounds like when your ears have been damaged by noise? Have a listen to Preserving your Hearing by Sensimetrics. Or for a different perspective, check out our hearing loss simulations.
Live music (pubs, concerts, festivals)
Australians have a proud tradition of supporting their favourite musicians, seeing cover bands at the local pub and going to music festivals during the summer. According to a University of Tasmania Live Music report, in 2014 there were more than 49 million attendances at live music events across Australia. That’s a lot of people at a lot of gigs!
While the noise levels at live music events may be more variable than they are at nightclubs, live music venues can be a significant and regular contributor to an individual’s overall noise exposure. NAL’s Binge Listening Study showed that concerts and live music venues are among the loudest of all leisure activities, we’re currently doing some research with some live music venues to see if we can reduce overall sound dose at a gig without impacting the experience – watch this space!
Listening to music
Official estimates suggest that over 12 million Australians use a smartphone, and just under half of these use their device to stream video and audio content. Just look around on the street and in any train, tram or bus and see how many people are tuning in. Listening while commuting can be risky because you often need to increase the volume to drown out the background noise.
We recommend using well-fitting headphones or earbuds, or even better, noise-cancelling headphones or earbuds – these devices cut out background noise so you can set your device to a safe listening level on your daily commute.