Understanding the consequences of recreational noise exposure
Medical Research Council
Chris Plack, Kevin Munro, Karolina Kluk, Rebecca Millman, Garreth Prendergast, Michael Stone, Hannah Guest, Carlyn Murray, Stephen Roberts.
External: Sue Francis (University of Nottingham), Rebecca Dewey (University of Nottingham)
In partnership with the University of Nottingham, the research studies in our programme address crucial unanswered questions:
- Just how damaging are concerts, nightclubs, and earphones?
- Which parts of the ears and nervous system are affected?
- Who is most at risk, and when?
We test for hearing damage that would not show up on standard hearing tests, using electrophysiology, high-frequency measures, and brain imaging. Our participants include teenagers, concert-goers, people with tinnitus, and noise-exposed workers. Online listening tests let us look at hearing worldwide. Unlike most noise research, we track hearing over time, giving a much clearer picture of the effects of noise.
Turn up, plug in, rock out: An intervention study to promote hearing protection uptake and sustained use for noisy recreational settings.
NIHR Manchester BRC, The University of Manchester, MRC, Manchester Centre for Health Psychology
Samuel Couth, Michael Loughran, Chris Armitage, Chris Plack, Mel Lough, Karolina Kluk, Anisa Visram.
Recent epidemiological studies have shown that younger and older adults are exposing themselves to noisy recreational activities (e.g., festivals, concerts, nightclubs, etc.) that have the potential to cause noise-induced hearing loss and tinnitus. However, only 2% of attendees in the UK regularly using hearing protection, and so there is a clear risk of hearing damage for the 34 million people who attend these events in the UK per annum. The aim of this study is to provide empirical evidence on whether the provision of good quality earplugs leads to uptake and sustained use of recreational hearing protection behaviours, and whether additional behaviour change techniques can be used to further improve uptake and sustained use.