Exploding head syndrome: A frightening phenomenon that’s surprisingly common

PULLMAN, WA—If you’ve ever been startled from your sleep by the loud sound of non-existent noises, you are not alone. In what may have sounded like an early April Fool’s Day hoax to some but was not, Washington State University (WSU) issued a press release on March 30 reporting that researchers there “have found that…

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OSHA says, company exposed worker to 8 hours of noise as loud as a jackhammer

WESTON, OH—The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has charged that MCM Precision Castings, Inc., exposed an employee to noise levels averaging 97 dB, equivalent to the noise of a jackhammer, over his eight-hour shift. According to an OSHA news release issued on January 17, an inspection of the company’s foundry in Weston, OH,…

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Survey finds that nearly half of U.S. teens show danger signs for hearing loss

PISCATAWAY, NJ—An alarming one out of every six American teenagers, or 17%, reports experiencing ringing, roaring, buzzing, or pain in their ears “often or all of the time” after listening to loud music or being exposed to power tools and other sources of loud noise. An additional 29%–for a total of 46%, close to half–report sometimes…

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Parents are cautioned that sleep machines may be a threat to infants’ hearing

The lulling white noise or gentle sounds of nature that an infant sleep machine (ISP) emits can bring relief to wakeful babies and their exhausted parents. However, research by scientists at the University of Toronto suggests that these popular devices, if not used carefully, can pose a threat to an infant’s hearing. A study published…

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Football and hearing issues came together for the Super Bowl

By David H. Kirkwood EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ—There were a lot of hearing angles to the 2014 Super Bowl, played last Sunday in New Jersey. For one thing, there was the Seattle Seahawks’ much heralded (and much criticized) “12th Man,” as the team’s incredibly noisy legion of fans came to be known. As noted by ASHA’s Joe…

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Super Bowl-bound player’s victory over hearing loss has made him a video star

SEATTLE—The National Football League conference championship games are a big deal for pretty much all American sports fans. However, people who share this blog’s interest in hearing and hearing health had two extra reasons to watch Sunday’s battle between the Seattle Seahawks and the San Francisco 49ers for the National Football Conference (NFC) crown. One…

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Scientists report that damage from noise exposure extends far beyond the ears

LONDON—Hearing scientists and hearing healthcare providers have known for decades that exposure to loud noise, especially over an extended period, often causes severe and irreversible hearing loss. However, a report by an international team of researchers reveals that the damage done by excessive noise extends far beyond hearing loss and related auditory problems, such as…

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Whistle blowers, beware: You may be risking your hearing

Factory workers, soldiers, miners, and bartenders are among those whose jobs often put them at risk of hearing loss. Now you can add sports referees to the list of potentially ear-unfriendly occupations. So report two audiologists, Gregory Flamme and Nathan Williams, in a study published last month in The Journal of Occupational and Environmental Hygiene…

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Insurer for BMW pays off mega-millions on hearing loss and tinnitus claims

COWLEY, UK–Former workers at the Cowley car plant in an industrial area of Oxfordshire, England, have been awarded more than 15 million British pounds (over $23 million US) in insurance payouts in compensation for damage to their ears suffered during decades of work in the noisy, 100-year-old factory. Most of the claims have been brought…

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New free eGuide advises consumers on protecting their hearing from noise

WASHINGTON, DC–The Better Hearing Institute (BHI) has published a free online eGuide to help address the escalating problem of hearing loss. The new 12-page e-guide, which debuted on August 23, explains to consumers how noise contributes to hearing loss and tinnitus and how to prevent noise-induced hearing loss. Individuals and employers are invited to download copies…

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