“Because I can blow away my ears”

Freiburg – With music on the ears of the commute to work is less boring, but under the circumstances, dangerous. After all, who zudröhnt with music from the headphone, not only risking the health of his hearing, but not – or only much too late, have also noticed the traffic. Experts therefore recommend: Down with the volume, or do without.

For health-endangering noise, there is a clear limit: “Anything above 85 dBA is harmful,” says the head of the ENT clinic at the University of Freiburg, Roland Laszig. The abbreviation dBA means how loud a sound reaches your ear, the dBA is the perceived sound pressure level. A compressed air hammer in seven metres developed according to information of the Federal environment Agency, approximately 90 dBA, vacuum cleaner at the same distance, at least 80 dBA.

As a General rule: The closer to the ear and the source of the noise, the louder. Headphones that sit within the ear, keeps the doctor therefore for the dangerous as the resting variant – after all, you are much closer to the sensitive eardrum.

MP3 players and Smartphones to be declared in Germany, but not louder than 85 decibels (dB), Michael coven from the industry Association High End Society. The manufacturer thus followed an EU-Directive. In the case of playback devices from the USA was, however, often only at 110 decibels conclusion. “You should expose yourself in no case longer than 15 minutes,” warns the expert. And in the case of headphones to the system, there is hardly a Limit: “I can blow away to me in theory, the ears, if I want to.”

The hair cells in the ear shifting back a gear

Such noise adventure, however, can have serious consequences. Responsible for Hearing hair cells in the inner ear. More noise on these than you can handle, turn down the man hears worse. Experts speak of a time threshold shift. “The effect is everyone knows, for example, of a rock concert,” said Laszig. He recommends that in the case of loaded ears a rest. “In any case, you should slide right in after the disco visit the earplugs in.”

Because the ears are exposed to often the noise is from the time a permanent loss of hearing. You may also Tinnitus is threatening, an unpleasant Continuous ringing in the ears. Where the Limit for a duration of the sound, also can not tell professionals exactly explains Laszig: “This is different for every person individually.” With increasing age the risk, that the ear is already damaged and thus more vulnerable to hearing loss due to noise is, however, is growing.

Can prevent such effects, those who buy the right headphones. “In some of the better devices I do not need to turn up the volume, perhaps, quite so far, and understand,” says the Association’s expert circles. It is also helpful if the headphones shield the outside noise well. Some models even work actively against annoying sounds: microphones in the earcups to determine how loud the environment is, and the headphones against controls. However, this technology needs its own batteries.

Not on a bike with headphones

This active noise canceling but has the disadvantage that, in addition to outside noise, also Important is hidden. A good shielding end of the headphones is the volume of the outside world lower by 20 to 25 decibels, explains the circle – even without the music. “Jogging in the woods, you can use them safely, but on the bike I would increase in any case.”

Similarly, the Andreas Hölzel from the ADAC. “Headphones mean a distraction”, says the traffic expert. The active and safe participation in road traffic is no longer given. “It can happen so quickly that you look at the road crossing right to left and the right.”

As a General rule: The faster a road user is traveling, the more severe the distraction weighs. However, it also depends on what trickles out of the Plugs or shells. “Music is often rather drip irrigation”, says Hölzel. “But in an exciting audio book I can sink literally.”

By law, the headphones are not prohibited, but. Not only pedestrian, Cycling and even car drivers can be quite something to wear on the ears. “What is prohibited is the acoustic foreclosure,” explains ADAC-traffic lawyer Markus Schäpe. The music on the ears should be not louder than the bell, or the horns of other road users.