We don’t often think of children’s toys as posing a risk to our child’s hearing. However, many children’s toys are quite loud and could be damaging to their long-term hearing health. It’s important to consider hearing damage when selecting toys for your child.
Think through some of these factors when purchasing your next toy from G. Willikers Toy Merchant.
Hearing loss can be caused by exposure to loud noises over time. According to the CDC, sounds over 70 decibels (dB) for a prolonged period can cause hearing damage. A loud noise over 120 dB can cause immediate damage. For context, a washing machine or dishwasher can measure 70 dB. There are some helpful tips to consider if you want to minimize your child’s exposure to loud toys.
What to consider:
- Does this sound too loud to me? If so, it’s probably too loud for your child.
- Consider removing batteries from toys that are too loud.
- Put tape over speakers on toys to reduce the sound.
- Play with louder toys outdoors or on mats or rugs to reduce the impact of the sound.
Why Is This Important?
Hearing loss can occur from exposure to loud noises gradually over time. According to the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders, about 18% of adults have speech-frequency hearing loss due to five or more years of exposure to loud noises in the workplace.
Continued exposure to loud noises can similarly affect children. Noisy toys are impactful on a child’s hearing because their arm span is smaller, making their exposure to a loud toy more direct. Additionally, children don’t always play with toys as directed, making exposure likely. A commitment to using toys with safe volume levels shows your child the importance of caring for their hearing as they grow.
You can still protect your child’s hearing and allow them to have fun by using caution when selecting certain toys or adjusting existing toys or play areas. Noise-cancelling headphones can also be useful for hearing protection in areas with loud music.
To learn more about protecting your child’s hearing contact Southwest Idaho ENT today.