Hearing loss isn’t the first injury that comes to mind when an arc fault occurs. The light and heat emitted by the massive electrical explosion – the arc flash – can cause life-threatening and life-altering burns to the skin, compression injuries and loss of limbs if workers are left unprotected.
Unless your hearing is tested, it’s really hard to know if it’s damaged. That’s the message of a recent Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) survey that found about one in four U.S. adults who say their hearing is good or excellent actually have hearing damage. Now the latest CDC Vital Signs report shows that much of this damage is from loud sounds encountered during everyday activities at home and in the community.
The American Tinnitus Association (ATA) has spent 2013 saluting members of the United States military and veterans, because they suffer from tinnitus disproportionately from the rest of the civilian population. For the past five years, tinnitus has been the number one service-connected disability for veterans from all periods of service and is particularly prevalent in Iraq and Afghanistan veterans.
Hundreds of people were in close proximity to the deafening bomb blasts at the Boston Marathon, and many have been treated at local hospitals for serious ear injuries. But hearing specialists say an untold number of other people could be suffering from hearing loss or ringing in their ears, called tinnitus, though they did not seek out medical help immediately.
Eight patients enrolled in a Mindfulness-Based Tinnitus Stress Reduction (MBSR) program experienced improvement in their symptoms and in how they perceived their disease, according to a Reuters Health news report.