An audiologist addresses a fair question: Can hearing be damaged by screaming children?
I was inspired to interview an audiologist for this article because my sister has been diagnosed with bilateral moderate hearing loss.
She has three kids and two are particularly loud, the whoop-and-holler type. A game of Scrabble will get these teen girls quite loudly excited.
They also have a habit of yelling out to their mother when they want her attention.
By the time they were 17 and 15, my sister had been diagnosed with the hearing loss. That’s a lot of years to be exposed to loud kids.
Being that these girls were so loud as teenagers, I can imagine that when younger, they did a lot of screaming when playing or when excited.
After I told the expert source for this article that my sister has always worked in quiet environments, didn’t wear earbuds, blast her music, hang around loud machinery, shoot guns or participate in other loud activities, here is what my expert source stated:
“I suppose it is fair to conclude that repeated exposure to screaming children over a period of many years could have caused her moderate nerve type hearing loss,” says Rachel Raphael, M.A., CCC-A, an audiologist with Mercy Medical Center in Baltimore.
“For those who worked in daycare or around loud children, we usually don’t consider that a risk factor for noise induced hearing loss, but I’m sure there are exceptions.
“Once again, not only the loudness/intensity of the sound, but individual susceptibility and length of exposure must be considered.”