Headphones Today, Hearing Aids Tomorrow?

Practice safe listening to prevent hearing loss.

By Lisa Esposito | Staff Writer Sept. 7, 2016, at 9:49 a.m.

Earbuds are everywhere: on the street, at school and at work. Compact and convenient, they deliver sound straight to your ear canals with a direct line to eardrums and delicate inner-ear structures. That has a downside, though. Audiologists warn that unsafe earbud use can potentially lead to irreversible, noise-induced hearing loss.

Nearly half of teens and young adults ages 12 to 25 in middle- and high-income countries are exposed to unsafe sound levels via personal audio devices, according to the World Health Organization. Below, experts give tips for protecting your precious hearing

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