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Echo Barrier Blog

Step in and stop the ringing

Posted by Tom Peary on May 24, 2015 10:40:00 AM | Acoustic Barriers|Construction Related|Noise Reduc

You might be familiar with the temporary ringing in your ears after attending a loud concert or sporting event. But for some, this is a constant internal buzzing and it affects them every day of their lives.

Tinnitus is a condition which affects a staggering 10% of the adult population. It causes a persistent ringing, buzzing, hissing or roaring sound in your ear that no one else can hear and it can be exacerbated or triggered by exposure to loud noise. The World Health Organisation has warned that noise induced hearing loss and tinnitus is a growing global health problem. So, what can we do about it?

Stepping in This week is Tinnitus Week. The aim of the week is to raise awareness for how the condition impacts those who live with it around the world. But it also provides a warning to us all on how we can protect our hearing. This is a significant part of our work here at Echo Barrier.
Our acoustic barriers are used across many industries where excessive noise can be a problem. Of course, there will always be a certain level of noise in the workplace, but for workers and employees on construction sites or factories who operate heavy machinery or power tools, the possibility of being exposed to excessive and uncomfortable levels of noise is much more likely. This is something that employers need to take seriously for the safety and wellbeing of their staff.
Acoustic barriers can help protect workers along with the provision of good hearing protectors, regular health checks and taking frequent breaks from noisy work.

Tackling tinnitus If you are having problems with your hearing you should see your GP. Your doctor will check ears for wax or infection, organise a hearing test, and refer you to a local ear, nose and throat or audiology clinic. As yet, there is no cure for tinnitus. But many people find that with the right therapy or combination of therapies, their tinnitus gradually improves over time. Some people also find that self-help techniques are useful for managing their condition. Here are some tips for manging tinnitus:

  • Learn to relax- worrying about tinnitus causes tension which can worsen the condition. There are a number of simple relaxation exercises that you can learn from books, CDs or classes, which will help relax your mind and body.
  • Sound therapy - listening to soft, soothing sounds can distract your brain from listening to your tinnitus sounds so you sleep better and notice your condition less.
  • Avoid silence- in a totally quiet environment your brain will try to hear any sound more clearly - including the sound of your tinnitus. Increasing the amount of ‘background noise’ in your home or workplace can help lessen your focus on your tinnitus tone.
  • Avoid earplugs- if you have tinnitus, you should not wear any kind of earplugs that make it more difficult to hear, except when exposed to very loud noises. They will not help your tinnitus because the sound you are hearing is not external.
  • Keep active- keeping active and involved in your interests and hobbies can enhance your quality of life and help you focus on other things aside from tinnitus.
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