What Are The 4 P's of Occupational Noise-Induced Hearing Loss?
When it comes to hearing loss in the workplace, noise-induced hearing loss is the most common. Employees and businesses should try to prevent hearing loss and protect their ears. This includes reducing volume, reducing exposure, and using proper ear protection. Know the four P's of occupational noise-induced hearing loss. It can allow you to better understand and protect against it.
Noise-induced hearing loss is permanent. Most people don't realize they have a hearing problem until after there is too much damage. This damage is permanent to their hearing. Both loud noises and exposure to steady-state noises can damage your hearing.
It may be easy to think that you'll feel when hearing levels are too loud. You may also think that you'll respond at that point to limit your exposure. The reality is that elevated noise levels that cause hearing loss don't cause pain. Most people who suffer from noise-induced hearing loss don't feel any physical pain.
Another common myth about noise-induced hearing loss is that the damage at one time. That's not the case. People with this type of hearing loss are usually exposed to the noise over many years. They also never used or rarely used hearing protection devices. Again, most people don't realize they have hearing loss until there's permanent damage.
The truth is that occupational noise-induced hearing loss is preventable. Use proper hearing protection devices and preventative measures. By doing this, employees can reduce noise-induced hearing loss in their workplace. The first step in preventing hearing problems is to know the damaging sound levels.
When you use machinery or objects that make noise, you should measure that noise. Whenever noise levels reach 85 dBA or above, you should use proper hearing protection. The following dBAs can be damaging to your hearing.
- 85 dBA for prolonged periods.
- 100 dBA for 15 minutes or more.
- 120 dBA for 9 seconds.
- 140 dba immediately.
Preventing Occupational Hearing Loss
You can protect employees from noise-induced hearing loss in many different ways. There should be hearing protection devices that employees have access to. These include earplugs and earmuffs. It also includes combat arms earplugs and TCAPS.
On an administrative level, you should reduce schedules. This is to limit the amount of time that you expose each employee to dangerous noise levels. Sometimes it's possible to distance an employee from the source of the noise. Also, provide signage around loud machines and noise areas. It can serve as a reminder for employees to put on the provided hearing protection devices.
Apart from reducing noise exposure, you can use engineering concepts. These can help to reduce loud noises from your work area design. When purchasing machinery and tools, opt for low-noise level devices. You can place a sound barrier between the noisy area or enclose it. There are many materials that you can use at work to reduce, muffle, or completely silence the sound.
Contact Us Today
If you think you have noise-induced hearing loss from your work, contact us today. Beltone of Northwest Florida is here to help with all your hearing care needs. Let our hearing care experts assess the damage. We can provide you with the best recommendations for hearing aid devices on the market.