Hearing Awareness Week 23 - 29 August - Drawing attention to hearing loss.

This week is Hearing Awareness Week. This is a week to draw attention to the prevalence of hearing loss and its causes and consequences. Hearing loss can occur from a short exposure to loud noise or as a result of exposure to noise for a long time. Noise induced hearing loss cannot be reversed. It can have a huge impact on a person's well being.

According to the Deafness Forum of Australia, one in six Australians has some form of hearing impairment and 37% of hearing loss is due to noise which could be prevented.

Noise experienced by people while working is a major cause of hearing loss. According to the Deafness Forum, farmers are at great risk of hearing loss when they turn up their music player head phones to block out noise from vehicles or machines such as a tractor. 

Check out the noise simulator on the Australian Government supported website.The noise simulator shows how much noise is made by music, tools and other sounds often heard while out and about. Noise is measured in decibels. According to the noise simulator, the noise made by an electric drill is 92 decibels and the maximum safe exposure without ear protection is 2 hours. the noise made by a chainsaw is 104 decibels and the maximum safe exposure without ear protection is 7.5 minutes. The noise made by a jackhammer is 109 decibels and the maximum safe exposure without ear protection is 1.875 minutes.