Musicians With Hearing Loss: Why It Happens – How To Handle

by Jan 4, 2022Hearing Loss0 comments

It’s like losing a hand—at least according to this report by The Guardian. And it makes sense. It’s hard to think of musicians with hearing loss. After all, isn’t good hearing their main quality?

Well, tinnitus can be a big issue for musicians. In fact, they could be at a higher risk than most people. After all, their sound exposure is almost constant.

But, why does that happen? What can they do about it?

Let’s find out.

Why are there so many musicians with hearing loss?

Suffering tinnitus as a musician isn’t rare. Actually, it’s quite common. After all, musicians are constantly exposed to loud noise. At least a third of all musicians have experienced tinnitus.

In most cases, it’s temporary. You might leave a rehearsal or a show with your ears ringing. Oftentimes, it’ll get better with rest.

That said, chronic tinnitus is entirely possible.

What’s the cause behind musicians with hearing loss?

We tend to see tinnitus as a consequence (or cause) of hearing impairment. Yet, this study says otherwise. It studied tinnitus severity as shown in classical musicians. Then, it investigated the causes.

Apparently, sound exposure can be more influential than other conditions. And, 35% of the subjects reported—at least—5 minutes of tinnitus in their lives.

Is sound exposure more important than genetics and personal physiology?

Basically, yes, sound exposure is the main factor behind musicians with hearing loss. It also makes sense. Sound during rehearsals can oscillate between 80 and 90 dB. Regular rehearsing under these circumstances is a considerable tinnitus risk.

It’s worth noting that sound over 85 dB starts becoming harmful.

But, what about long-term and chronic tinnitus?

Fortunately—at least in the study—most participants reported temporary tinnitus. It’s relatively normal to leave a concert or rehearsal with ringing ears. The problem comes when it lasts longer.

Some instruments could incur a higher risk of chronic tinnitus. For intermittent tinnitus, rest is usually enough.

What can you do as a musician with hearing loss?

Luckily, you’re not out of options if you experience tinnitus. Whether it’s short or long-term, you can overcome it. You just need to know where to start.

Thankfully, Music Radar has a fantastic list of tips.

Most of them are useful habits you can develop and put into practice. For instance, resting after rehearsals or events.

Take breaks

Firstly, don’t spend the entire day listening to music and loud sounds. Your ears aren’t machines. They get fatigued and demand rest regularly. That’s especially true after long exposure.

Wear protection

If you find hearing loss an issue after rehearsing, use earplugs. They’re a cheap investment that can help you keep your hearing healthy. Moreover, it’s easier to filter certain frequencies with them.

See a professional

Of course, don’t hesitate to seek medical help if tinnitus becomes a serious issue. For instance, your ears shouldn’t ring for more than 24h. If it lasts longer than a couple of days, see a doctor.

Sound therapy could help

Finally, you can use sound therapy to lower how disruptive tinnitus can be. For instance, try setting the volume below your ear ringing. It might help you focus less on your tinnitus. Thus, you’ll feel as if it became less noisy.

The holistic takeaway

musicians with hearing loss man playing guitar reclined in a wall

Musicians with hearing loss aren’t doomed. Today, there are countless methods to help your hearing recover.

Even better, tinnitus is usually temporary in musicians. But, that’s as long as you’re careful with your hearing.

So, I invite you to try these tips and see what works. If you need more help, I’d recommend you check out Synapse XT. It’s a natural supplement that improves how your brain translates sound signals.

To learn more, you can read my official review!

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