Noisy Toys Can Do Harm To Kids’ Ears

December 18, 2014 Hearing Loss

thumbnailWhen you are looking for that perfect gift for your child or grandchild, it’s important to consider the level of noise the toy makes.  In many cases, the sound level produced by some toys is too high for children and can cause noise-induced hearing loss.

On average, around two babies out of a thousand are born with some type of hearing loss.  By the time they are teenagers, that percentage rises dramatically.  The Arizona Commission for the Deaf and the Hard of Hearing estimates upwards of 20% of all children have some form of noise-induced hearing loss.

Dr. Spencer Darley of the Hearing & Balance Institute of Utah says noise-induced hearing loss in children is hard to detect.

“Our ears are very resilient and can take a lot of abuse,” said Darley.  “However, the ears can only take so much after many years of loud noise.”

Dr. Darley recommends a few common-sense tips to reduce the chances for noise-induced hearing loss:

  • Encourage your child not to use ear phones at high volumes for too long.
  • Lock your child’s mobile device volume at an acceptable level.
  • Always test noisy toys before your child plays with them.  As a rule of thumb, if the toy is uncomfortably loud for you, it is too loud for your child.
  • Not sure if the toy is too loud?  Download a free decibel meter app onto your mobile device.  Anything above 85 decibels is too loud for your child.