The Physiological Effects of Noise Exposure on Man
AbstractNo one would argue the point that modem technology has -introduced rapid growth and advancement throughout the world within the last few decades. While achievements are countless, one detrimental adversity which has been, until recently, an unknown consequences is the effect of noise on man. Specifically, noise has introduced irreversible hair cell damage to the cochlea reducing man’s potential for normal hearing sensitivity. Noise induced hearing loss (NIHL) may be caused by either long term exposure above the damage risk criteria, or instantaneous exposure. In any event, hair cell damage to the cochlea is the end result. Depending on man's exposure to noise, either temporary threshold shifts (TTS) or permanent threshold shifts (PTS) will ensue. The intent of this paper is to present current research in the area of noise exposure as it affects physiological changes within the auditory system. In addition, concomitant changes that face man due to a reduction in hearing sensitivity are discussed. Finally, current research by the present author in the area of noise exposure, ototoxicity and the additive effects on high risk infants are presented.
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