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NBC Sounds Alarm Over Earbud Hearing Loss

NBC News’ Today show did what it does best by airing another alarming report, this time about earbud-related hearing loss.

Citing the World Health Organization, the show warned that more than 1 billion young people are risk because of personal audio devices and high noise levels at live venues.

“Probably the largest cause [of hearing damage] is millennials using iPods and [smartphones],” said Dr. Sreekant Cherukuri, an ear, nose and throat specialist from Munster, Ind., who cited the higher fidelity of today’s portable devices and the closer proximity of earbuds to the ear drum, which can raise volume by as much as 9 decibels.

His advice to young patients: Stop wearing headphones.

But more realistic, and industry-friendly, suggestions comes from other hearing experts who recommend buying noise-cancelling headphones, or using Apple’s parental control setting to lock into place volume levels of 60 percent or lower.