Drive a Convertible? You May Be at Risk for Hearing Loss, Doctors Say

Ear, nose and throat specialists are warning that if you drive a convertible, you may want to start wearing ear plugs while driving, or you could lose your hearing, the BBC reported.

Combine the sounds of the engine, wind, road and traffic, and convertible drivers who drive at speeds of 50 miles per hour or higher are exposing their ears to sounds of 110 decibels, according to research in the journal Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery.

To put it in perspective, the noise level of a normal conversation is 60 decibels.

"Noise-induced hearing loss is frequently preventable,” said Dr. Mark Downs, of the Royal National Institute for Deaf People. "Regular exposure to noise levels of 88-90 decibels when driving a convertible for several hours a day can lead to permanent hearing loss over time.”

Researchers noted you can cut the noise level when driving in a convertible by at least rolling up the windows.

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