I recently went to an outdoor event with music and fireworks after the show. I met many families who were wondering if the sounds were too loud for their baby.
I told them that it was a good question! At that moment, I wasn’t aware of the impact of sound on a young baby in that context, or what’s suggested to prevent problems.
I wanted to answer the question as fully as possible. In addition to my research, I also talked to Andréa, an audiologist, for more in-depth details.
First, excessive noise can have an impact on hearing over the long-term, whether for adults, children or babies if repeatedly exposed to excessively high decibels. The notion of sound is relative to each person and depends on their age. Something that is too loud for you may not be for someone sitting beside you.
Decibels are the way we measure the intensity of sound. Some sounds will surprise your baby and make them jump, interest them or make them cry.
A baby’s central neurological system for hearing starts developing during its life in the uterus and continues after birth. It will reach maturity around 12. For this reason, and to promote learning, you need to expose the baby to sounds found in everyday life. Even very small, they can make the difference between day and night based on auditive stimulation. If you over-protect your baby by limiting sound, they may become intolerant to changes in intensity and strongly react to sounds, even those considered normal. Everything depends on the dosage and balance in the sounds. Too much noise, extensive exposure or sounds that are too loud will tire out a baby and have consequences on their hearing over the short- and long-term.
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