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Int J Audiol. 2012 Feb;51 Suppl 1:S3-11. doi: 10.3109/14992027.2011.635316.

Typical noise exposure in daily life.

Author information

  • 1Department of Speech Pathology and Audiology, Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, MI 49008-5355, USA. greg.flamme@wmich.edu

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

Identify the distribution of typical noise levels present in daily life and identify factors associated with average sound levels.

DESIGN:

This was an observational study.

STUDY SAMPLE:

Participants (N = 286) were 20 to 68 year old men and women, drawn from the general population of Kalamazoo County, Michigan. A total of 73 000 person-hours of noise monitoring were conducted.

RESULTS:

Median overall daily average levels were 79 and 77 dBLeq(A,8,equiv), with average levels exceeding EPA recommended levels for 70% of participants. Median levels were similar between the hours of 9 a.m. and 9 p.m., and varied little across days of the week. Gender, occupational classification, and history of occupational noise exposure were related to average noise levels, but age, educational attainment, and non-occupational noise exposures were not.

CONCLUSIONS:

A large portion of the general population is exposed to noise levels that could result in long-term adverse effects on hearing. Gender and occupation were most strongly related to exposure, though most participants in this study had occupations that are not conventionally considered noisy.

PMID:
22264061
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC4685462
Free PMC Article
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