To prevent damage to your ears, don’t expose your ears to high-decibel volumes for an extended period of time. The louder the volume, the less time you should be exposed. Arnaldo Rivera, MD, medical director of MU Health Care’s ENT, Hearing and Balance Center, offers a look at decibel levels of common sounds. Decibel levels higher than 85 are harmful and hearing protection should be worn.
|Normal conversation, background music||60 dB|
|Vacuum cleaner, average radio||75 dB|
|Power lawnmower||88 dB (hearing damage in one hour)|
|Chainsaw, leaf blower||106-115 dB (hearing damage in 30 seconds)|
|Sports crowd, rock concert||120 dB (hearing damage in less than eight seconds)|
|Gunshot||140 dB (immediate danger to hearing)|