The purpose of this initiative is to gather and share information on hearing loss caused by damaging sound in public and personal spaces, and suggest how we can take action against it.
The damage caused by the deliberate production of amplified noise that injures hearing in public and personal places is a public health and safety crisis. Millions of people in Canada are suffering severe personal, social and economic costs from permanent debilitating hearing loss. Much of that loss is the result of deafening sound deliberately inflicted by the entertainment business. Millions more are unwittingly gradually being deafened every day.
Most of us are annoyed by high levels of sound but only a few understand the steady incremental permanent loss of hearing that comes with it, and what protections we have against it.
Hearing loss from damaging sound is widespread in our population. It limits understanding and communication in all parts of life. Most hearing loss is gradual. We initially are unaware of it, then deny it or work around it, perhaps shout to encourage loud speaking, and put off getting hearing aids as long as possible – sometimes until it is too late for our brain to adapt to them. Social, personal and work-place problems ensue. In education and work settings, many ‘problem personalities’ are individuals struggling with deafness.
There is a scientific consensus that deafness cuts us off from our reality more than the loss of any other sense. Hundreds of scientific studies have proven that noise causes serious damage to our physiological and emotional health, learning and performance by disrupting sleep, generating adrenalin shocks, and inducing anxiety.
The current crisis is primarily caused by the fact that here are no regulations, organizations or professions protecting us from damaging sound inside our public and personal spaces. Read more about the Canadian soundscape >