How WFH Phone Calls Can Negatively Impact Your Hearing

01 Oct 2020

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Calls after calls after calls! Are the number of calls you attend daily while working from home draining you? Do you miss your office where you could just go to your colleagues’ desk and ask them to get the work done? Now it seems like a hundred calls before a task is completed. It can get really annoying, especially when you have to wait until the minute-long COVID-19 caller tune ends, then another 20 seconds of ringing and the person on the other end doesn’t attend the call. Adding to it is the frustration of not getting the work done.

However, more than the frustration, there’s something else that’s alarming. Attending several calls a day while working from home can pose a threat to your ears. Here’s everything you need to know about how this affects your ears and what you can do to prevent complications. 

How Too Many Calls Are Affecting Your Hearing

Holding your mobile phone against your ear for a long time is bound to force pressure on it. This can cause damage to your ears [1]. Apart from that the heat and radiation can also add up to the damage. 

The battery of the cell phone heats up when it’s been in use for too long. This then heats the body of the phone which is in contact with your ear. Researches and studies made on this topic claim that prolonged contact with a mobile phone can raise the temperature of the head and cause headaches [2]. 

Another reason why this can be harmful is the radiation emitted from cell phones [4]. Although the radiation is very small, the proximity of the mobile phone to our ears and the continuous exposure has proved beyond doubt that cell phones may cause hearing loss. Sleep disorders, nausea, dizziness, and Tinnitus are other issues associated with prolonged mobile phone use [3].

Earphone Choices And Ear Problems 

Most of us hardly bother to invest in high-end earphones as it is easier and cheaper to pick up a pair from a local stall. We also tend to look for cheaper variants while buying earphones online by adjusting our filters and setting the price priority from low to high. It seems practical to avoid spending thousands, even hundreds, for a branded pair of earphones when there are cheaper variants that cost just 50-100 bucks. However, investing in a good pair of earphones can be your first step in protecting your ears [5]. Listed below are the reasons why you should not buy road-side earphones.    

Distortion: Local earphones generally have plenty of distortion, which forces you to increase the volume while using them. Loud volumes may cause permanent damage to your hearing, and the louder the volume, the quicker you’ll damage your ears. 

Unequal Amplification: Cheap/local earphones do not amplify the sound equally over a range of pitch and volume. Meaning, the pitch, and the volume can spike or drop suddenly, which may cause serious damage to your hearing. 

Bad Fit: More often than not, cheap earphones have a bad fit. And an ill-fitting earphone may not only hurt your ears but will also force you to turn up the volume which may damage your hearing. 

General Tips On Protecting Ears And Hearing

  • Keep your phone on the loudspeaker mode when you know the call is going to last long
  • Use good quality earphones
  • Limit how often you listen to loud music
  • Use speakers instead of earphones to enjoy music whenever possible
  • Keep the volume low while using earphones
  • Give your ears time to recover
  • Get your ears checked regularly

References: 

  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5664865/
  2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5626766/
  3. https://www.alliedacademies.org/articles/the-relationship-between-mobile-phone-use-and-ear-problems-among-medical-students.html
  4. http://www.jpgmonline.com/article.asp?issn=0022-3859;year=2017;volume=63;issue=4;spage=221;epage=225;aulast=Das#:~:text=Mobile%20handset%20can%20cause%20a,functional%20properties%20of%20cell%20membrane.
  5. https://m.dailyhunt.in/news/india/english/the+health+orange-epaper-orange/do+your+hearing+a+favour+don+t+buy+fake+or+roadside+earphones-newsid-76134000

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