Hand Dryers: For Kids, Beware the Noise

Hand Dryers: For Kids, Beware the Noise

It’s no secret that hand dryers installed in public bathrooms can seem rather loud, but we were blown away by a young scientist’s findings when she put the volume levels of 44 automated machines to the test in restrooms across Alberta, Canada.

Turns out some of those volumes can do a number on kids’ ears — which are more susceptible to noise-induced hearing problems — by reaching sound levels well beyond the danger zone of 85 decibels. Several of the various brands measured above 100 decibels when in actual use for hand-drying, and one was even greater than 120.

The study, by then-9-year-old Nora Keegan, has captured international attention, with coverage by the New York Times, CNN, Canada’s CBC, and other media outlets. Now 13, Keegan is likely one of the youngest researchers to have her work published in the journal Pediatrics & Child Health. …

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an elderly asian couple stand atop a mountain surrounded by fog, proud of overcoming hearing loss

Myth Busting: 5 Facts About Your Hearing Health

Is hearing loss an isolated issue that doesn’t affect my overall health? Can a simple sound amplifier take the place of hearing aids? Is there nothing I can do about that ringing in my ears?

Nearly all hearing problems can be effectively managed, but misconceptions can get in the way of continuing the journey to better hearing health. We’re busting five myths with facts to help you stay on track!   Myth: Hearing impairment simply comes with aging. Fact: “Age is the strongest predictor of hearing loss” for 20- to 69-year-olds, per the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders, but did you know that about two to three of every 1,000 U.S. kids enter the world with a detectable impairment? In Canada, an estimated 4 out of 1,000 children are born with some form of hearing loss or will develop it early. Plus, noise-related hearing damage — …

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