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A Quarter of NYC Adults Ages 18-44 Report Hearing Loss

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NYC: One-in-4 who listen to loud headphones report hearing problems. Attendees enter through giant headphones at the Turtle Beach display during E3, the Electronic Entertainment Expo held at the LA Convention Center in Los Angeles on June 11, 2013. UPI/Phil McCarten

NYC: One-in-4 who listen to loud headphones report hearing problems. Attendees enter through giant headphones at the Turtle Beach display during E3, the Electronic Entertainment Expo held at the LA Convention Center in Los Angeles on June 11, 2013. UPI/Phil McCarten

NEW YORK, July 16 (UPI) — New York City Health Department data show nearly 1-in-4 18- to 44-year-olds who frequently listen to loud headphones report hearing problems, officials say.

“Though hearing loss is preventable, more and more people are having trouble hearing,” Dr. Thomas Farley, New York City commissioner of health, said in a statement. “With more people regularly using headphones, the message is loud and clear — New Yorkers need to turn down the volume to protect their ears.”

A report, Hearing Problems and Headphone Use in New York City, based on data collected from the 2011 New York City Community Health Survey, found a quarter of city adults ages 18-44 who reported heavy headphone use were more than twice as likely to report hearing problems than those who report light-to-moderate use or no use of headphones.

Prolonged exposure to loud sounds can cause irreversible damage to the inner ear, resulting in hearing loss, tinnitus — ringing in the ear — or both, Farley said.

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