How to save your hearing from loud salsa night clubs

Posted on about 8 years ago

Have you ever woken up with that obnoxious ringing in your ears after a long night of dancing at the club? Is that EVERY weekend for you? If so, you may want to look into options to protect yourself from Noise induced hearing loss. The way it develops is this: you go to a noisy club- noisy to the point that the next morning your ears are still ringing. This is a temporary threshold shift, a (mostly unnoticeable) hearing loss. In about 24 hours, your hearing is completely back to normal. However, after doing this week after week for several years, the "temporary" threshold shift becomes more permanent as the damaged inner ear structures can no longer repair themselves.

Salsa clubs vary in how loud the music is, so some people may be more at risk than others. The more frequently you go out, the more damage you are potentially causing. If you think this is a problem for you, you may want to try using earplugs. I made a recent earplug discovery when I noticed a salsero friend wearing these- musician's earplugs: they soften the loudness without muffling the sound.

Excessive noise exposure is the most common cause of hearing loss (source: American Hearing Research Foudation). For this reason, we salseros who are risking our hearing should take the proper precautions so that we can coninue to enjoy our passion. The earplugs were originally invented for musicians who are constantly exposed to noise, but need to hear the sound quality, as this video explains:

This is a great advantage compared to regular earplugs. Plus, regular ones can be less than aesthetically pleasing (hot pink anyone??), and these earplugs come in clear. There is a range of styles and prices, from $12 one size fits all to the more costly $150 custom fit earplugs. I hope this information is helpful and allows more people to enjoy our hobby and passion without risking our hearing! Here are a couple of sites that may be useful:

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