Dental health care workers are subjected to both intermittent and continuous noise. Basic hearing hygiene recommends avoiding noises that are too loud, too close, or last too long, a nearly impossible set of recommendations for dental office employees.
No one is immune from the noise coming from treatment rooms, the dental lab, or sounds produced by office equipment. Noise is additive and hard environmental surfaces exacerbate every sound. Noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL) is a very real threat, resulting in a permanent, life-altering disability.
It is critical for every dental professional to understand their relative risks for developing NIHL, how NIHL develops, the symptoms of this life-altering condition.