As adults age, a certain amount of normal hearing loss is expected.
Suffering from hearing loss caused by conditions at work is a different issue altogether. Millions of employees suffer from work-related hearing loss every year. Occupational hearing loss occurs when exposure to high levels of noise or certain substances harm a person’s sense of hearing. Risk for hearing loss on the job may happen when an employee is exposed to noise of at least 90 decibels.
Occupational Hearing Loss Symptoms
If someone answers “yes” to three or more of the questions below, then they are likely to have incurred some degree of hearing loss.
- Need to turn up the volume on the TV?
- Ask others to repeat what they said?
- Hard to understand people in loud settings?
- Need to sit up close at meetings?
- Trouble discerning where sounds are coming from?
- Difficult to hear someone talking to you in the next room?
- Has anyone told said you are having a hard time hearing what they say?
- Ringing in your ears?
Occupational Hearing Loss Causes
Broward County employees who suffer from high exposure to loud noises may develop sensorineural hearing loss (SNHL). When tiny hair cells and nerve endings detect sound in the ear, then they become injured, diseased, do not work correctly, or die. This type of hearing loss within the workplace is typically unable to be reversed. Hearing loss may also develop from pressure differences between the inside and outside of the eardrum, as well as trauma caused by explosions, earphones, music concerts, and gunfire.
Certain occupations are at greater risk than others. According to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), over 30 million employees are exposed to hazardous noise on the job, and nine million are at risk for hearing loss caused by dangerous solvents and metals.
High Risk Jobs for Hearing Loss
Industry related studies that measure hearing loss and disability claims report it to be one of the most common industrial-related diseases in our nation. Occupational hearing loss is also the second most self-reported occupational illness or injury. The list below ranks the jobs at highest risk for hearing loss.
- Plumbers -48% report hearing loss
- Carpenters – 44% report hearing loss
- Metal Workers – 49% report severe hearing impairment by age 50
Others at high risk of developing hearing loss at work include those in the following industries:
- Utility Worker
Employees who suffer from work-related hearing loss are eligible for workers’ compensation benefits! It is important to talk with an experienced South Florida workers’ compensation attorney. We can help you prepare your paperwork to get the results you are looking for.
If you need assistance to file a workers’ compensation hearing loss claim, the Law Office of David Benenfeld is here to help. For or a free legal consultation and book call today: [number type=”2″] or [number type=”1″].