If you enjoy using headphones, earbuds, or in-ear earphones, you’re probably eager to know which are the best headphones for ear health. Choosing the right personal listening equipment is key to avoiding problems such as ear drum damage and hearing loss. We will go over useful information and talk about some of the best headphone options for ear health.
Be Careful to Avoid Prolonged Exposure to Loud Noise
One of the most significant steps you can take to help preserve your ear health is to avoid listening to excessively loud sound for extended periods of time. Exposing your ears to loud sound for extended periods can lead to cell death. This, in turn, can mean you will suffer hearing loss problems.
If you use headphones or earbuds in very noisy environments, like public transportation, then invest in noise cancelling technology. Headphones or earbuds with noise cancelling technology will block outside noise. This means that you won’t feel the urge to turn up the volume too high to drown out your surroundings.
Always remember how long you have been using your headphones or earbuds. This is crucial no matter the context in which you are listening to them. You should try to avoid listening to music through your headphones or earbuds for extremely long periods of time. One of the best headphones for ear health on the market can keep track of the amount of time and the volume you have been listening to. This allows you to be better empowered to take care of your ear health.
It is best to use both earpieces and ensure that you have sound coming out of both sides. Otherwise, if you listen from just one earpiece, then you will probably put the volume up far too loud.
Get Over-Ear Headphones Instead of Earbuds or In-Ear Earphones
One reason why earbuds and in-ear earphones can be especially damaging to the ears is the fact that they go inside the ear canal. This means that if you put the volume too high, you are at greater risk of hearing damage.
Earbuds and in-ear earphones can also damage ears because of how they can push wax further into your ear and even cause wax impaction around the eardrums. Wax impaction can lead to infections and also blocks sound from reaching your ear drum. You will likely find yourself increasing the volume to hear better, and this can lead to further hearing damage.
Over-ear headphones sit over the ears, as the name implies, which means that they are less likely to cause damage.
Invest in Higher Quality Headphones
When you use low-quality headphones or earbuds, you might turn up the volume to try to compensate for the poor sound quality. This is one reason why you should try to pay more for a higher quality model of personal listening equipment. Be aware that the majority of headphones and earbuds on the market are low or at least mediocre quality.
Listening to prolonged and excessively loud sounds can lead to hearing loss by damaging the cilia in your ears. Each of your ears contains approximately 18,000 cilia. Cilia are miniscule hair cells and they are key in the transmission of sound. They are essential to the mechanism of sound being processed in your ear and send electrical signals to your brain.
Cilia can die if they are exposed to excessive sound for long periods of time. They are unable to regenerate themselves, which means that once they are gone, they are gone. When this happens, you suffer from noise-induced hearing loss.
Check Out New Kinds of Headphones
There are some models on the market today that are especially good for those of us worried about ear health. Two of the best headphones for ear health are the Bose Bosebuild and BeyerDynamic Aventho. These headphones have features built into them that keep track of the length of time and the volume at which you have been listening. They will automatically bring down the volume when that is necessary to keep you safe.
As mentioned earlier, noise cancelling headphones are a great option, especially if you will be using your headphones in very noisy places. You could alternatively look into noise-isolating headphones. These are different from noise cancelling earphones, as they only block out the noise physically. For example, they may have a noise isolation effect because of thick padding and the seal created around the ears.
Understand Decibels and Ear Health
It’s generally recommended to limit your music listening to no more than 85 decibels for no longer than eight hours each day. It is difficult to know how many decibels you are listening to without a decibel meter. Instead, you can follow the rule of listening to music for a maximum of an hour at a time at less than 60 percent of your headphone’s maximum volume.
It’s also best to avoid listening to loud music on your headphones when you are going to an event with loud noise on the same day. For example, if you are going to a concert, you should avoid listening to your headphones on the same day.
Take Care of Your Ear Health
As we have seen here, listening to loud music on headphones, earbuds, or in-ear earphones for extended periods of time can eventually lead to permanent hearing loss. Always be mindful of your ears and don’t be too hard on them with your headphones.
It’s also important to practice good hygiene with your headphones, earbuds, or in-ear earphones. If you have one of the latter two, this is especially important because they go into your ear. Read the instructions that came with your device to find out how to properly clean and how often. A good rule of thumb is to use an alcohol-based wipe to clean your earbuds after each use.