We use our earphones over a long period every day. Researchers have shown that using earphones over a long period can cause damage to the ears. Today we will answer the elephant in the room, how to use earphones without damaging ears over a long period. These simple tips can help you prevent any irrecoverable damage to your hearing abilities.
We have heard it from our older generation that earphones can make you deaf. However, it may not be something that happens instantly but over the long term, it can cause damage. The most common type of earphones we find today is the earbuds which fit inside your ears. These headphones sit tightly inside your ear canal and provide a better insulation of the outside sound. Additionally, it provides a clearer and sharper music listening experience.
These headphones that sit well inside the ear canal with prolonged use can cause damage to your eardrum. World Health Organization has said that the major cause of hearing problems among young adults is loud music. Earphones tend to deliver the music straight to the inner ears which consist of small parts like the three small bones responsible to transfer the sound waves inside the ear.
Studies and health experts have always suggested earphones users keep the volume at optimum levels so that it cannot put pressure on the eardrum. In an article published in Washingtonpost, it says that most ear damage is caused due to nerve damage. Nerve damage can result from loud music even when exposed for few minutes.
How Can You Protect Yourself from Ear Damage Using Earphones
You can easily protect yourself from ear damage using any kind of earphone. World Health Organization has set a standard that can be labeled harmful to your ears. Any sound or music that is above the limit of 85dB can be termed as harmful to ears. Even loud sounds can rupture your eardrum permanently. Listening to music using headphones may not rupture your eardrum but it can cause nerve damage.
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Always Use Your Earphones At 60% Volume
Make it a point that you should never use your earphones at more than 60% volume while listening to music. This is such a serious issue that most music players and even mobile platforms have started warning the users of the risk of higher volume. Remember the small pop that appears when you plug in your earphones and increase the volume above 60%? Many ignore it and turn the volume up, this can cause damage to not only your eardrum but also cause nerve damage inside the ears.
Limit the Time of Using Earphones Everyday to 60 Minutes
Do you have the habit of listening to music for a prolonged period of time? It’s time you change your habit and make sure you limit the usage of earphones. A very general rule you can follow is 60/60 rule. This means use the earphones at 60% volume for 60 minutes at one go. This will ensure that you have the optimum protection from any ear damage from the earphones. If you really want to make sure you are safe, experts suggest limiting music listening using earphones to 60 minutes a day. Making this a habit will eliminate the sustained pressure on your ears and reduce the chances of damage.
Buy Good Quality Noise Cancellation Earphones
It is sensible to buy a pair of headphones that have active or passive noise cancellation. Noise cancellation is the technology that allows the earphones to cut the outside noise. This will help you get better sound and clearer music at lower volumes without the interference of background noises. Normal earphones without a noise cancellation will always tempt you to get the volume up for clear music. However, the noise cancellation earphones can deliver high-quality sound at even lower volume. This way you are not forced to crank your volume up but still enjoy your music. Below are some noise cancellation earphones you can have a look on Amazon.
- Symphonized NRG 3.0 Earbuds
- Sennheiser CX200
- Sennheiser CX 685 Adidas Sports In-Ear
- 1MORE Triple Driver In Ear
- Sennheiser IE80 Headphone
- Skullcandy Jib In-Ear Noise-Isolating Earbuds
- TaoTronics Wireless Earbuds
- Skullcandy Ink’d 2.0 Noise-Isolating Earbud
- Shure SE215-K Sound Isolating Earphones
- Samsung Gear IconX (2018 Edition) Bluetooth Earbuds
- Actionpie In-ear Headphones Earbuds
- ROVKING Wired Sweatproof Earhook In Ear sports earphones
- Betron YSM1000 in-ear, Noise Isolating earphones
- GGMM In Ear Noise-Isolating Earbuds
- Sennheiser CX 180 Street II In-Ear
- boAt BassHeads 225 In-Ear Super Extra Bass
- Sennheiser CX 275 S In -Ear earphones
- JBL C100SI In-Ear
- Audio-Technica ATH-CLR100BK In-Ear
- Tagg Inferno, Wireless Bluetooth Earphone
- Sony MDR-EX150AP In-Ear
- Sony Premium MDR-XB55AP In-Ear Extra Bass
- 1MORE Piston Fit Earphones with MIC- Gray
- House of Marley Smile Jamaica EM-JE041-CP In-Ear
- CrossBeats Pulse Wireless Bluetooth In-Ear
- TAGG SoundGear 150 In-Ear Earphones
- Bose SoundSport Wireless Headphones (Black)
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Ensure your Earphones are Perfect Fit for your Ears
Earphones come in various sizes for people with different size of ears. Same as the benefit of using noise cancellation earphones, having better fitting earphones will ensure better music output. A loose fit earphone can leak sound and tempt you to raise the volume levels to enjoy the music. This again will cause damage to your ears if you are listening to music on a higher volume level. You mostly get few ear tips with your headphones of different sizes. It is best to try all of them and see which one fits you perfectly and does not cause any sound leak.
Use Over the Ear Headphones
Experts have commented that using over the ear headphones can make a difference compared to the earphones sitting deep inside the ear canal. Earphones are generally an inside ear type where the speaker or the earphone head sits well inside the ear canal. This type of earphones delivers the sound waves directly to the eardrum from inside the ear.
Over the ear, model headphones sit over your ears with headbands. The sound has to travel from outside of the ears to inside. As they sit on the ear rather than inside of your ear they are safer as there is no direct impact on the eardrum. Additionally, these headphones are larger with big drivers to deliver better sound. This can be ideal for people looking for best music listening experience along with the safety of their ear. These headphones do have noise cancellation and can really help you keep the volumes low. We will list some of the over-ear headphones we really like below on Amazon.
- Bose SoundLink around-ear wireless headphones II Black
- Bose QuietComfort 25 Acoustic Noise Cancelling Headphones
- Audio-Technica ATH-M30x Professional Monitor Headphones
- Bose QuietComfort 35 (Series I) Wireless Headphones, Noise Cancelling – Black
- Sennheiser HD 4.50 Bluetooth Wireless Headphones with Active Noise Cancellation (HD 4.50 BTNC)
- Audio-Technica ATH-M20x Professional Monitor Headphones
- Sony MDR-XB450 On-Ear EXTRA BASS Headphones (Black)
- Sennheiser PX 80 Over-Ear Headphone (Black/Silver)
- Sennheiser HD 180 Over-Ear Headphones (Black)
- JBL C300SI On-Ear Dynamic Wired Headphones (Black)
- Philips SHP1900/97 Over-Ear Stereo Headphones (Black)
- Audio-Technica ATH-M50x Over-Ear Professional Studio Monitor Headphones (Black)
So, here are few tips on how to use earphones without damaging ears. Inculcate these in your daily habit to prevent any substantial damage to your ear and hearing abilities. Based on our suggestion and experience we highly recommend using the earphones or headphones at 60% volume levels all the time for not more than 60 mins a day. You can choose the over-ear headphones which can help you control the volume levels more effectively.
Do share your thoughts and share the article with all people who care about and spread the knowledge. Keep these simple tips in mind next time you are out shopping for a new pair of earphones.