Listen Up! Protect Your Child's Hearing
To protect your child’s hearing, try to keep them away from loud noises. If you can’t avoid the noise, have them use noise-cancelling headphones.
All of us, including our children, live in a noisy world. But being around too much loud noise can make children lose their hearing — and once it’s gone, they can’t get it back.
That’s why it’s so important to start protecting your child’s ears now, while they’re young.
DID YOU KNOW?
- More than 1 in 8 children (ages 6 to 19) already have hearing damage from loud noise.
- The louder a sound is, and the longer you listen to it, the more it can damage your hearing.
- Most people don’t feel any warning signs (like pain or ringing in their ears) until their hearing is already damaged.
Here’s the good news:
There’s a lot you can do to help your child develop healthy hearing habits.
To protect your child’s hearing:
- Avoid loud noises whenever possible.
How loud is too loud? If you need to raise your voice to talk to someone who’s only a few feet away, it’s probably loud enough to hurt your child’s hearing.
Take steps to get away from the noise — like moving farther away from the speakers at a concert, or closing the windows if someone is using loud power tools outside your house.
- Keep the volume down.
Many TVs, personal music players, toys, and other electronic devices can be dangerously loud at the top volume.
Check your phones, tablets, and other devices to find settings that limit the volume to a safe level — aim for a volume that lets you talk to someone a few feet away without raising your voice.
- Use hearing protection.
If you’re going to a loud place like a video arcade, movie theater, or sports game, bring a pair of noise-cancelling headphones for your child. Adults and older children can also wear earplugs.
- Set a good example.
Talk to your child about how loud noise can hurt their ears. Explain the steps you’re taking to protect your own hearing — like wearing earplugs in loud places, or plugging your ears with your fingers if you’re outside while an ambulance or fire truck with sirens is going by.
Research shows that this can make kids more likely to choose healthy behaviors when they are older.
If you’re concerned about your child’s hearing, talk to your child’s doctor.
To learn more about noise-induced hearing loss, visit