Noise Induced Hearing Loss

Hearing Loss Caused by Noisy Working Environment

If you are suffering from hearing loss which you believe is attributable to excessive noise at work you may have a condition known as industrial or occupational deafness which you can claim compensation for. Questions you may be asking about hearing loss include:

Hearing Loss/Industrial Deafness - Injury Claims

What is it?

  • It is the deterioration of a person’s hearing over a prolonged period of time caused by the exposure to noise in the working environment
  • Noise causes one of the most common health problems for workers
  • Noise levels and the daily exposure to noise over a period of time, both contribute to hearing damage

Who is most at risk?

Those particularly at risk include workers who have worked in any of the following industries or professions:

  • construction eg metal work, drilling and stone cutting
  • manufacturing eg textile and bottle manufacture
  • shipbuilding
  • driving
  • foundries
  • food processing
  • agriculture
  • engineering
  • woodworking
  • any job involving work which requires the operation of noisy machines

However, a person can also suffer from occupational deafness just from working in a noisy factory or working environment. Excessive noise in the workplace can even lead to tinnitus. Tinnitus refers to the condition of noises 'in the ears or in the head' with no external source. The types of noises heard include ringing, buzzing, whistling, and humming.

What is acoustic shock?

Others at risk of industrial deafness include call centre operators or anyone wearing a telephone headset. This type of injury is called acoustic shock and is a term used in conjunction with incidents involving exposure to short bursts of high frequency/intensity audio sounds through a telephone headset.

Signs and symptoms

It is often difficult to detect hearing damage until significant loss has occurred. The first signs can be:

  • family members complain the TV is too loud
  • joining in group conversations becomes difficult
  • you experience difficulties holding telephone conversations

The effects of excessive noise exposure

Hearing loss can often be the result of physical damage to the middle ear, eardrum, and the inner ear. The hair cells inside the inner ear can be permanently damaged by excessive noise levels. Intense noises can rupture the eardrum and dislocate or even fracture the small bones of the middle ear. If you feel any pain in your ears it is often a distinct warning that your threshold for damage has been reached.

If your ears have been damaged you could suffer symptoms of dizziness, motion sickness and disorientation. Excessive exposure to high levels of noise can also result in stress, fatigue, and irritability.

We can help you

Simpson Millar LLP's specialist Team of dedicated and highly skilled solicitors deal with claims of this nature frequently and will advise you fully and help you to make a compensation claim for noise induced hearing loss.

Call us now on freephone: 0808 129 3320 or use our free, no obligation, online enquiry form to register for a call back from our Industrial Deafness Compensation Team.


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Gavin Evans | Partner &  Head of Industrial Disease | Simpson Millar LLP

Gavin Evans
Partner & Head of Industrial Disease

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