Understanding Headphone Safety


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Whether it’s listening to music, movies, audiobooks, podcasts, videos, etc., most people are spending more time with headphones in their ears. The convenience that headphones offer has made them a necessary accessory. With that being the case, understanding the basics of headphone safety will keep your listening comfortable and fun.

How can headphones damage your hearing?

Loud noises are a primary danger to the health of your hearing. Headphones operate in close proximity to your eardrums, and they can blast incredibly loud sounds. That is why it is so important to be cautious with your headphone usage.

Upon reaching the ear, loud sounds cause the eardrum to vibrate. The vibration travels along small bones to the inner ear where it eventually reaches the cochlea. The cochlea is a chamber filled with fluid that contains thousands of small “hairs.” As the vibrations hit the cochlea, the fluid vibrates the hairs. The louder the sounds, the stronger vibrations which cause the hairs to vibrate more.

When you listen to loud songs for too long, those delicate hair cells lose their sensitivity to vibration. The cells begin to fold or bend over, and that bending is what creates the sensation of “temporary hearing loss” after exposure. The hair cells can usually recover from the vibrations, but in some cases, the damage done leads to lasting hearing loss. There is no treatment for repairing inner ear damage.

Recommended Length

It can be very easy to spend the entire day listening to your favorite tracks or hearing your favorite book. However, there is a recommended length of time for headphone usage. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), you should only use headphones for one hour a day.

This may seem like no amount of time; however, you can extend it if you keep the volume at a lower level. As long as you are listening at a comfortable volume, you should be able to enjoy your headphones for a longer period of time.

Recommended Volume

As far as volume goes, you do not want to blast music into your headphones for all the reasons mentioned above. It is important to note that personal headphones are topped at a maximum volume of around 105 to 110 dB (decibels). Sounds that sit at above 85 dB can cause damage within two hours. However, being exposed to sounds from 105 to 110 dB causes damage in just five minutes. This means that headphones have the potential to cause substantial damage if played at their highest volume. It is recommended to listen at a volume of anything less than 70 dB.


We hope this information on headphone safety is helpful to you.

Empower Brokerage is dedicated to helping you educate your clients on the insurance they need and staying on top of their health. Whether it’s through webinar training, one-on-one calls, seminars, or marketing plans. We want you to be successful. Give us a call if you have any questions 888-539-1633.

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