When thinking about the safety of a children’s toy, we often consider whether an object is too sharp or too heavy, but what about too loud? Some toys can reach volumes that may be harmful to your child’s hearing and cause problems down the road.
The Risk Loud Noise Poses to Your Hearing
Exposure to loud noise is one of the leading causes of hearing loss, along with aging. While this exposure can come from a single loud burst, it can also come from prolonged exposure to noises at a loud but lower level.
In fact, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), “Noise above 70 dB over a prolonged period of time may start to damage your hearing. Loud noise above 120 dB can cause immediate harm to your ears.”
Common noises that reach this volume and higher include:
- Rock concerts
- Live sporting events
- Hunting or shooting
- Riding a motorcycle or ATV
- Listening to music too loudly on your headphones
- Mowing the lawn
- Working in a loud environment like a construction site
Advice When Shopping for Children’s Toys
The next time you find yourself shopping for your child’s birthday or an early holiday present at The Toy River, consider the following tips:
- If the toy sounds too loud to you, it’s probably too loud for your child.
- Avoid purchasing toys that have a warning to keep away from your ears, as children can very easily forget or disregard that information.
- Consider putting masking tape over the speaker of certain toys to reduce volume.
- For certain louder toys, make the rule that they can only be played with outside and when using proper hearing protection like earmuffs or noise-canceling headphones.
Testing Your Child’s Hearing
The vast majority of children are tested for hearing loss upon birth during universal newborn hearing. However, sometimes hearing loss doesn’t develop until later in childhood. If you have noticed that your child doesn’t seem to respond to your voice or has exhibited other signs that may indicate a problem, schedule an appointment for a hearing test.
If your child has hearing loss, treatment options like pediatric hearing aids can help them to better process speech and sound and prevent them from falling behind socially and academically.
To learn more to schedule an appointment with one of our experts, contact Speech & Hearing Associates today.