Friday, January 22, 2010

Listen Up!

I'm a big fan of hearing. Aren't we all? We need our hearing for a million different things. For me, music is important as I'm a musician. But I like hearing nature as well and sometimes that requires super fine hearing.

In our world today we are constantly bombarded by more and more gadgets that make noise. Some of those we can control the volume on, some we can't. Here's some info on protecting our, and especially our kid's, hearing.


Did you know that when MP3 players are purchased as gifts, the majority of purchasers are moms? That finding emerged at the Mommy Tech summit at the recently concluded Consumer Electronics Show.

But do you know about the potential risks? Kids often don't know how to use audio technology safely and they can harm their hearing as a result. In fact, hearing loss among young people is reported to be on the rise and there are strong concerns that a generation of young people could end up with prevalent hearing loss.

"For some time, the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) has warned that hearing loss in the United States could rise significantly due to the misuse of personal audio technology," ASHA President Tommie L. Robinson, Jr. explains. "Unfortunately, a report released today by the Kaiser Family Foundation cites some alarming trends about excessive entertainment media consumption among our nation's children, indirectly supporting ASHA's concerns. This should be a warning to parents that they must regulate children's exposure and fully understand the potential health threats associated with misuse and over exposure to such technologies."

"ASHA will continue to bring these issues to the forefront and appreciates the Kaiser Family Foundation's contributions to the national dialogue," Robinson adds.

According to a 2004 study by the Kaiser Family Foundation, children were reported as being exposed to 6 hours and 21 minutes of media (TV, music, internet, etc) per day. By 2009, this statistic had increased dramatically to 7 hours and 38 minutes per day. When media multitasking is taken into account, this leaps to 10 hours and 45 minutes per day. This massive consumption of media has led to decreased grades in school and ASHA contends it puts kids at an increased risk of hearing loss.

One thing that is clear from the study is that parents can be very positive influencers on how their children use entertainment media.

How You Can Help

Whether your child received an MP3 player, gaming device, cell phone, laptop, or any other device with headphones, don't overlook the important health threat of hearing loss. Now is the time to reach out to other parents about the importance of hearing loss prevention, the damaging effects of excessive media consumption, and the resources available to them through ASHA.

Here are two simple ways to protect your children's - and your own - hearing.

· Keep the volume down. A good guide is half volume.

· Limit listening time. Give your hearing 'quiet breaks'.

Find more information and statistics at ASHA's website. You can also follow their Twitter feed or fan them on Facebook to get real time updates on their work.

Content of this post is provided by the Global Influence Network.


  1. Krista-Lynn,
    Thank your hubby for calling with his condolences after you guys were force to re-live my fateful worst day ever via the blog. Sorry that I made you Ill. Most days little boys are marvelous fun. It's just those other days, when they have way more fun than you do.

  2. Since my kids have ipods & nintendo ds's I'm always concerned about their hearing. I set limits on their volumns but they're always complaining that it's not loud enough. :-(


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