One of the well known risk factors for hearing problem is loud music from earphones. How noise damages nerves in the ear remained unclear until University of Leicester researchers has uncovered the answer.
Myelin sheath is a protective shield that maintains the integrity of the nerve cells that transport sounds from the ear to the brain in the form of electrical signals. Exposing the ear to loud sounds, over 110 decibels, can causes striping of these cells from their protective shield resulting in disturbance of the transported electrical signals and eventually hearing problem.
Nowadays, some music player we use in our houses can be wound up to volumes of 100dB (A) – above the danger level, thus it is loud enough to harm your hearing ability.
It has been found by researches that damaging the cell’s coat is the way that loud music causes hearing problems; this fact has been published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
In multiple sclerosis, damage to the myelin sheath is believed to play a role in the pathogenesis of the disease.
Digging in the cellular mechanisms of the hearing problem caused by loud music is likely to uncover very important facts that will help us to cure this condition and prevent the progression of this impairment depending on Dr Martine Hamann, who led the hearing loss study.
“Hearing loss can be temporary in certain cases because the sheath can rebuild itself. And it was showed that the myelin sheath of the auditory nerve is lost in half of the cases” as it reported by Dr Martine Hamann.
“Sheath around the auditory nerve has recovered after three month so the effect is reversible “
In the past, the researches focused on changes in the dorsal cochlear nucleus caused by loud noise. This part transport sound signals from the ear to the brain area responsible about sound understanding and decoding.
Damage in this area will cause ringing in the ear rather than hearing problem.
More than 600,000 people in the UK complain of tinnitus that disturb their quality of life so, finding a cure to this irritating thing is important.
Understanding the cellular mechanism of such impairment is best done by adapting researches like that being carried out at the University of Leicester to find the proper cures.
Consideration to protect your hearing
- Good quality earphones or headphones.
- Sound-isolating or noise-cancelling headphones.
- Regular breaks from music through earphones of at least five minutes an hour.
- Devices with limited features that doesn’t allow exceeding healthy limit.