The Sweet Sounds of Tinnitus!

The Sweet Sounds of Tinnitus!

After anxiously waiting in the online queue for what felt like hours, you finally snagged those tickets to the hottest show coming to San Diego. We will call him “Truce Ringsteen”. Once you are done celebrating, it is time to figure out how to prepare for the concert of your life.

tinnitus and concerts

Concerts are one of the common causes of tinnitus in San Diego. To understand why, first you need to understand how loud noises can harm your hearing. Anything over 85 dB can damage the intricate inner workings of your ear. To put this into perspective: a normal conversation clocks in at about 60 dB, traffic in San Diego can be about 85 dB and the sirens on an emergency vehicle can reach 120 dB. Now, just to be clear, an ambulance zooming past you on the freeway won’t damage your hearing. Noise induced hearing loss only happens when something is incredibly loud, such as an explosion, or you are exposed to any sound over 85 dB for an extended period of time. Sounds like a concert to me.


Much like noise-induced hearing loss, tinnitus is caused by damage to the inner ear. Inside the inner ear, there are small hairs. Sound waves cause these hairs to move, and these movements send an electrical signal through the auditory nerve to your brain where it is interpreted as sound. If these hairs become damaged, they can randomly send electrical impulses to your brain, causing tinnitus. Age-related hearing loss, exposure to loud noise and earwax blockage are all common conditions that cause inner ear damage.


The good news is there is an easy solution. Earplugs! Seems almost too simple. Fortunately for you, you had to buy your Truce Ringsteen tickets far in advance. This give you time to visit your San Diego audiologist to be fitted for earplugs. While there are a wide variety of earplugs on the market, the best ones are the ones that are expertly fit to your ear. Musician’s earplugs are the ones you will need. These custom earmolds are able to reduce sound levels evenly so music and speech sound clear. These plugs prevent dangerously loud sounds from entering the ear but still keep the integrity of the music intact.

Don’t let the concert of a lifetime leave you with a lifelong condition. Contact your San Diego audiologist for more information on how to safely attend a concert.


Hearing Health and Outdoor Concerts

hearing protection san diego

The summer is winding down, and in other parts of the country, so are outdoor music events. However, San Diego’s incredible climate allows us the distinct pleasure of enjoying outdoor concerts well into the fall. For example, the Birch Aquarium at Scripps provides unparalleled ocean views during its summer-to-fall concert series. Humphrey’s Concerts at the Bay is another art performance series that offers live music and comedy through the end of October. With several weeks left of exceptional outdoor music performances, be sure your ears are prepared for the task.

Your ability to hear properly is a key factor in the overall experience of a musical event. For that reason, many individuals decline using foam earplugs. As professionals in hearing health and technology, we understand that these devices can slightly alter the sound experience by muffling certain frequencies, but did you know there are ways to replicate the sound at less dangerous noise levels?

There is an advanced form of hearing protection that actually processes incoming sound and replicates the frequencies at a lower volume. This high-fidelity technology is commonly used in place of traditional earplugs for musicians and is referred to as “musicians earplugs.” An audiologist performs an impression of the ear to provide a custom-fitted earmold that won’t interfere with the sound experience.

For those with some degree of hearing loss, the best way to experience live performances is by using hearing aids. The technology has improved exponentially in the past several years. In modern devices, digital processors are used to reduce the volume of unwanted sounds and amplify quieter frequencies. New digital devices can also be programmed to treat your specific hearing loss in a variety of settings, including concerts.

Taking charge of your hearing health ensures you are getting the most out of every concert. If you are hearing impaired, we encourage you to speak to an audiologist, who will help you in selecting the best hearing aids. San Diego Hearing Center has been providing hearing evaluations, diagnostics and treatments to our community for years. To learn more about hearing protection and treatment, contact our staff at (619) 298-8546.