Q. Do you think high pitch sound through headphones will damage ears?

Answered by
Dr. A K Srivastava
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
This is a premium question & answer published on Feb 23, 2017

Hi doctor,

I have sensitive hearing. Otherwise, I feel great and use hearing plugs when necessary. I fear that hard and high pitch sounds will destroy my ears. Today, when I was about to do a home hearing test on my mobile, and accidentally the volume was at its loudest settings. The first tone that came out of the headset was a high pitch sound of around 8000-9000 kHz. It felt very strong. I was very choked by this and took the headphones off immediately. The tone sounded in my ear is 1 second or less. My ears did not ring after but feel like they are blocked a little, or it is just a feeling. I am not sure how hard the sound pressure was inside the headphone, but I took my db meter and put it on the headphones and played the same tone again with the volume full and the level was about 74.6 decibels. I just want to know if I have anything to be scared of and if a small event like this can damage my ears permanently?



Welcome to icliniq.com.

I understand your concern.

  • You are suffering from hyperacusis (increased sensitivity to sound). This is observed in the following conditions:
  1. Labyrinthitis (infections of Labyrinth).
  2. Early stages of degenerative changes in cochlear.
  3. Palsy of stapedius muscle.
  4. Tumors of the cerebellopontine angle.
  • Therefore, a thorough examination and relevant investigations are needed to work out your case for treatment.

For further information consult an ENT otolaryngologist online --> https://www.icliniq.com/ask-a-doctor-online/ENT-otolaryngologist

Hi doctor,

My ENT doctor said that there is nothing wrong with my ears, but I have mild ETD. Do you think a tone like this can damage ears?



Welcome back to icliniq.com.

  • The tone you are observing is produced due to the auto firing of hair cells. This node is a sign to show that degenerative process may be in the labyrinth.
  • I suggest you take Ginkgo biloba, Methycobal (Methylcobalamin) and vasodilator with the consent of your otoneurologist.

For further information consult an ENT otolaryngologist online --> https://www.icliniq.com/ask-a-doctor-online/ENT-otolaryngologist

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