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Deafness Due To Loud Drill

Since the industrial revolution the workplace has become more mechanised. With the coming of new and bigger machines came an even noisier working environment. Deafness due to loud drill can occur in a workplace which consistently runs loud drills which if workers are not provided with the correct protective equipment can put workers in danger of losing their hearing. A pneumatic drill is so loud that it gives out eight times more noise than the standard level which requires ear protection in industry. Health and Safety Laws now force employers to provide protection to the workers such as earplugs or protective headsets to reduce the risk of construction deafness.

The ear is divided into three parts outer, middle, and inner. The outer ear contains the eardrum which transmits it through the small bones in the middle year, to the fluid filled inner year. Vibrations are then picked by the fluid in the inner year which causes the inner hairs to vibrate. These vibrations are then transferred into electrical signals and then these signals are delivered to the brain. Somewhere in this process the problem arises, but the medical science has found it difficult to find a cure to this problem.

Symptoms of deafness due to loud drill include tinnitus, temporary loss of hearing, muffled hearing, trouble hearing high pitched noise and permanent deafness which generally occurs when a person is exposed to the noise for a very long period of time. Sometimes loud noise does not cause complete deafness it makes a screeching noise in your ears, it never stops, and the thing which is unbearable is that you will be the only one to hear it no one will share the noise with you . This problem is defined by the medical science as tinnitus.

Exposure to noise above 85 decibels (dB) may be hazardous for hearing even if it lasts for a short span of time. A hand drill measures 98 dB, a hammer drill 114Db, a pneumatic percussion drill 119dB and a mining drill gives us 108 – 113 dB which can surely make a person deaf after working continuously under that environment.

The thing that becomes clear is that repeated exposure to high intensity sounds can lead to weakening of delicate hearing cells in the inner ear which eventually will lead to their damage. So an employer has legal obligation to ensure health and safety of the worker, to provide safe work procedures and equipments.

To ensure the safety of the ears one can always:

  • Wear hearing protection
  • Make hearing protection convenient
  • Limit your exposure to noise
  • Have your hearing tested by a health care
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