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World Hearing Day: Tips for safe listening

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ANN ARBOR—About 1.1 billion teenagers and young adults around the world are at risk of developing hearing loss due to the unsafe use of smartphones and other personal audio devices, and exposure to damaging levels of sound in noisy venues.

Richard Neitzel, associate professor of environmental health sciences at the University of Michigan School of Public Health, is working with the World Health Organization on a new initiative called "Make Listening Safe."

Richard Neitzel.Richard Neitzel."My work has been designed to help us better understand the exposures and effects of noise," he said. "About 360 million people worldwide face moderate to high hearing loss due to various causes like noise, genetic conditions, chronic ear infections, aging, etc.And million others are also at risk of other health impacts of noise including cardiovascular disease."

This year's World Hearing Day (March 3) aims to draw attention to the economic impact of hearing loss and cost effectiveness of interventions to address it.

Neitzel offers tips for maintaining safe hearing:

Related research by Neitzel: