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Did you know that 14.5 million people in the UK will suffer from some form of hearing loss by 2031? A whopping 90 per cent of young people have admitted experiencing ringing in their ears too – an early sign of hearing damage.
At Allearplugs.com we were truly alarmed by these figures, so in early 2015 we set about launching the #Saveyourhearing campaign; designed to bring about change, raising awareness of the risks posed to young unprotected ears and the dangers of tinnitus – a debilitating ear condition usually caused by exposure to loud noise.
Just ten minutes of loud rock music at 115dB – 35dB above the levels usually considered safe – is enough to start doing serious damage to your ears… including tinnitus!
In a bid to spread the word to as many young people as possible, we have sought support across a number of industries to send the #Saveyourhearing message out to followers in all four corners of the globe; and we’ve been truly humbled by the response so far.
We’ve reached out to influential names in all manner of niches; from world-renowned rock bands and musicians and adrenaline-junkie motorcyclists through to clay pigeon sharp-shooters and Rio 2016 Olympic Games swimming hopefuls to become advocates of our campaign.
The story so far…
World-famous rock bands
Three of the rock world’s most celebrated bands have thrown their weight behind the #Saveyourhearing campaign, urging their fans to wear ear protection whenever they attend gigs to avoid lasting ear damage:
• Hardcore punkers, Cancer Bats;
• Welsh post-hardcore act, The Blackout;
• Sheffield-based metalcore mob, While She Sleeps;
• American metal group, Edge of Paradise
The bands have all published their own personal messages to their substantial online following, advocating the importance of protecting ears from damaging stage sounds.
The members of While She Sleeps, said: “Strangely enough it took us quite a while for the importance of wearing ear plugs to sink in! If you’re like us and like your music loud, we urge you to start wearing them now before it’s too late. It would be a disaster to damage a part of you that makes you so happy and can create such colourful worlds of wave form dimensions that can provide you with so many areas of peace, pleasure and creativity.”
We’ve also had fantastic support from many leading music magazines, such as Metal Hammer, who have been happy to share the campaign message with their readership. And that’s not all – plans are in the pipeline to work in partnership with successful heavy metal music festival, Bloodstock in 2016 to take the message to festival goers!
Three of the biggest up-and-coming names in motorcycling have stepped forward to support the campaign:
• Corey Alexander
• Melissa Paris
• Jordan Imrie
The endorsement from professional riders is incredibly valuable, with motorsport enthusiasts regularly at risk of hearing damage. 80dB is generally accepted as the ‘danger zone’ for hearing, and the average motorbike generates noise of over 100dB on its own!
Wind noise can also be a ‘silent killer’ for motorcyclists, with the turbulence generated at high speeds capable of reaching 103dB. If ear protection is not worn, riders of all ages and expertise are almost certain to experience some form of hearing damage in the medium to long term; and maybe even sooner than that!
Corey Alexander, who competes in AMA Pro Roadracing’s Motorcycle Superstore Supersport Class, said: “For me, I can’t ride on or off the track without ear plugs. When I find a comfortable pair that works well it really makes my riding experience that much better, plus it keeps my ears safe.”
We’ve also had the pleasure of providing many motorcycling blogs and publications with content supporting our campaign, including Ultimate Motorcycling
Clay Pigeon Shooters
We’ve had support from one of the most decorated names in the world of clay pigeon shooting, Stuart Clarke. Winner of the following:
• World Sporting Championship
• Beretta World Sporting Championship
• British Open Sporting Championship
• English Open Sporting Championship; and many more titles
Stuart certainly knows a thing or two about firearms – and also hearing impairment.
Clay pigeon shootingcan cause significant hearing damage in a short space of timeAlmost all firearms are measured above 140dB: a noise level that’s more than capable of causing permanent ear damage. Stuart was proud to put his name to the #Saveyourhearing campaign, to encourage fellow shooters across the world to always use ear protection when using firearms.
Stuart said: “I can’t stress enough just how important it is to protect your hearing, especially when taking up any shooting sports. I suffer from chronic tinnitus due to not wearing hearing protection until I was 25 years old. The allearplugs.com #Saveyourhearing campaign is a great cause and one I am proud to be a part of. Everyone who comes to the range with me has to wear hearing protection; it is amazing just how quickly you can damage it and I do not wish tinnitus on anyone.”
Swimming and surfing are increasingly popular sports and with Rio 2016 fast approaching, we sought to raise awareness of hearing loss among watersports athletes. Swimmer’s earaffects one-in-ten UK people at some point in their life – a painful and irritating condition that affects thousands of people around the world.
Symptoms include itchiness and painful swelling as well as slight hearing loss. The most painful symptoms can spread to the jaw, making it difficult to manage day-to-day. Our #Saveyourhearing campaign has raised awarenessthe preventative measures that swimmers and surfers alike can take to avoid swimmer’s ear; encouraging more people to get in the pool!
But we want to do more!
To date, the #Saveyourhearing campaign has enjoyed a reach of around five million people, across all social channels, but with your help we can spread the word further and stop young people across the globe doing serious damage to their ears within a matter of minutes.
So here’s how you can do your bit:
If you would like to get involved with the campaign, simply drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org. We can provide press releases regarding #Saveyourhearing for your websites and publications and we welcome comment from those keen to raise awareness!
We’d also be happy to share your story. If you would like to let us know and share your experience and views on hearing loss and/or tinnitus we’d be delighted to feature your story on our blog, like we have done for Corey Honesshere