Specialist hopes to start movement to help prevent hearing loss

Specialist hopes to start movement to help prevent hearing loss (Image 1)

The damage children are doing to their body now may not show up for years, however, the damage may not only be permanent, but also preventable.

Nashville's News 2 spoke with Dr. Roland Eavey, chair of the Department of Otolaryngology and the director of Vanderbilt University Medical Center's Bill Wilkerson Center, who hopes to start a new movement regarding preventing permanemnt hearing loss in children.  

“Over time, you get to the point of no return and hearing won't come back. The ringing won't go away and it will be a problem,” Eavey explained.

According to experts, children are immersed in listening to music and using headphones.

“Depending how you define hearing loss, about one in five adolescents has mild minimal hearing loss,” he said.

Eavey also added that 20% of kids are on the path to hearing loss.

Nashville's News 2 spoke with several area teens and adults regarding how loudly they listen to their music and if they have suffered from any hearing loss.

“I turn it up to listen to it for a little bit, then I turn it back down because it will start to hurt after a little bit,” Justin Davis said.

“I think it has messed [my hearing] up a little bit because I really have trouble at times hearing,” said high school freshman Claire Johnson.

According to Eavey, temporary hearing loss typically comes back, but the damage done to a person's inner ear, does not come back.

Dr. Eavey said if a parent can hear their child's headphones while they are wearing them, then the volume is too loud.

“We're just trying to spread safe practice. Just like going to the beach 30 years ago, nobody brought sun block in fact they wanted to come out as bronze as they possibly could,” Eavey explained.

Eavey said it is important for parents to talk to their children about how loudly they are listening to their music, as well as setting an example themselves and setting volume limits.

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