Home Health & Wellness Live Concerts Impacts Young People’s Hearing Health, Research Reveals

Live Concerts Impacts Young People’s Hearing Health, Research Reveals

Reading Time: 3 minutes

A new study from Specsavers audiologists has revealed that nearly half (42%) of young adults (18–44 years old) have experienced some form of hearing loss at some point in their lives.

Based on a survey of 2,151, over one in ten (11.8%) respondents aged between 18 and 44 said they attend live music events at least once every three months, with over half (52%) admitting to either having had ringing ears or muffled hearing afterwards.

Because of this, nearly a third (30%) of participants have said that they’re less likely to attend a live music event in the future.

But the research revealed that the younger generation (18–44) also isn’t taking precautions to protect their hearing at these events, such as wearing hearing protection, potentially leading to issues in the future.

Four in five (84%) of the panel aged 18–44 that attended live music events regularly admitted to never wearing hearing protection, with 14% saying they’re unsure of the benefits or where to get them from.

While there are many forms of hearing protection available, nearly a quarter (22.4%) of people have never considered purchasing any form of hearing protection before any music event.

Specsavers chief audiologist, Gordon Harrison, says: “Many people assume that hearing issues only happen in your later years. However, it can affect people of all ages and unfortunately, the longer we leave hearing issues, the worse they can become.

“It’s so important to look after your hearing, especially when at festivals, gigs, concerts or anywhere in general where there’s loud music or noise. Wearing hearing protection can really help, and having regular hearing checks can help identify and manage hearing loss symptoms and minimise any long-term impact.”

According to Statista, the live music industry is expected to reach $30 billion in revenue over 2024, the biggest year in history for live music events.

The 2024 music industry will be bigger than ever, meaning more of a reason to invest in some hearing protection before any live music event.

It’s a great way of protecting your hearing, stopping any excessive noise from getting through your auditory system and causing damage to the hair cells that help us hear. There’s no need for any big over-the-head headphones anymore, as earbuds can be extremely hidden.

The survey also revealed that over half of young adults between 18 and 44 (50.2%) say they get altered by their device because their music is too loud, potentially causing damage, with over two-fifths (42%) saying they don’t limit their volume.

Nearly 9 in 10 young adults between 18 and 44 (99%) are using headphones to listen to music every day, according to Specsavers.

A quarter of those (24%) admit to listening to music through headphones for 5–10 hours each week.

Gordon Harrison explained: “Audiophilia is the passion for extremely high-quality sound through big speakers, headphones, sound bars and power amplifiers.

“The convenience of smartphones and headphones, and even streaming platforms, make it accessible for us to listen to our favourite songs on the go.

“However, our survey found that there are far too many people ignoring the warning signs on their phones, recommending the user to turn the volume down to a suitable limit.”

The survey by Specsavers also revealed that the younger generation (18–44) is very unaware when it comes to hearing protection, with the common misconception that hearing problems start in the older age group.

Gordon added: “Listening to music too loud for a long period of time can not only cause hearing damage in the future, but can cause a range of problems at that moment too.

“Once your hair cells, which respond to sound and send impulses to the brain, are overstimulated, they may stop responding to sound through headphones. This may result in temporary hearing loss that can last anything from a few minutes once you stop to a couple of days.

“Tinnitus, which is a ringing or high-pitched sound in your ears, is experienced by X number of people in the UK. It can be as a result of listening to loud music too frequently and not following the right precautions, which is why turning your music down to a safe level is so important at such a young age.”

A 2014 study reported that 1.1 billion teenagers and young adults around the world are at risk of hearing loss due to the unsafe use of personal audio equipment and exposure to high levels of sound at events.

There are 12 million adults in the UK who are deaf, have hearing loss or have tinnitus, according to RNID.

© Copyright 2014–2034 Psychreg Ltd