The potential risk that children’s toys can pose to their hearing health is often overlooked. Many of these toys produce loud noises that, over time, could be harmful to their long-term hearing health.
Exposure to loud noises over an extended period can lead to hearing loss. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) warns that prolonged exposure to sounds exceeding 70 decibels (dB) can damage hearing. To put this into perspective, a washing machine or dishwasher typically produces around 70 dB. Immediate damage can occur from a loud noise over 120 dB.
To protect your child’s hearing, consider these tips:
- If a toy is excessively noisy, consider removing its batteries.
- You can cover the speakers on toys with tape to help lower the sound.
- Encourage playing with louder toys outdoors or on rugs or mats, which can help absorb some of the sound.
- If a toy’s noise level is too loud for you, it’s probably too loud for your child.
Understanding the Importance
Gradual exposure to loud noises can result in hearing loss. The National Institute of Deafness and Other Communication Disorders states that approximately 18% of adults have speech-frequency hearing loss due to five or more years of exposure to loud noises at work.
Children are not immune to this. Their smaller arm span means they hold loud toys closer, making the sound exposure more direct. Children may not always use toys from Mr. C’s Toys as intended, increasing the likelihood of exposure. Teaching them to use toys with safe volume levels instills the importance of preserving their hearing health.
Protecting your child’s hearing doesn’t mean they can’t have fun. With a little caution in toy selection and by making some adjustments to the existing toys or play areas, you can create a safe and enjoyable environment for them. In areas with loud music, using noise-canceling headphones can be an effective measure for hearing protection.
For more information on how to protect your child’s hearing or to schedule a hearing test, don’t hesitate to contact Tinnitus & Hearing Experts today.