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Q. Hearing damaged after hearing high sound. Would doing the same thing cause further damage?

Answered by
Dr. Anuja Rajendra Sonawane
and medically reviewed by Dr.Nithila A
This is a premium question & answer published on May 03, 2019

Hello doctor,

I have a question about hearing. Firstly, I am aware that hearing loss takes place when the tiny hair cells within the inner ear are damaged. My question is, once a particular hair has been damaged, will the same sound level that previously damaged it, hurt it again? For example, if you listened to a sound at 90 dB for nine hours and your hearing was damaged, would doing the same thing another day further damage your hearing? Or would it not change anything, as your ears would not be registering the same level of sound as the previous time?

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Hello,

Welcome to icliniq.com.

There is something called a temporary threshold shift and permanent hearing loss. Temporary loss is the loss which if a sudden burst of sound and you get hearing loss as hair cells are fatigued however hearing regains soon in some time. If it is a permanent loss that too at a severe level for all frequencies chances are the person will not notice the same loudness of the sound afterward however there are some pathologies where the sound amplifies itself, and it is called recruitment.

So in that condition, the person may not even respond to a loud sound of 80 dB however they might complain abnormal loudness at 90 and feel the same discomfort as a person with normal hearing has. It all depends on the pathology and condition of the hearing loss.


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