Euro 2024 has begun; it’s going to be a noisy tournament!

Today is the first game of Euro 2024 with hosts Germany kicking off against Scotland this evening. The top 24 teams in Europe will play over a total of 51 matches and the winner will be crowned on Sunday 14th July at the Olympiastadion in Berlin. Is 2024 the year that football is finally coming home!?

How much of a noisy tournament will it be?

Quicker answer: a very noisy tournament! The noise level in football stadiums is usually between 80-90 decibels (dB), but can reach up to 100 dB at the loudest stadiums. There are thousands of people all crammed together and are encouraged to make a lot of noise.

After attending a match, it would not be uncommon to experience buzzing or ringing in your ears. Sometimes this will disappear after an hour or so, but in more severe cases, it could be a sign of hearing damage. Unfortunately, generally by the time you notice this, it could be too late to reverse any damage done.

Football stadiums are noisier than you may expect.

How is your hearing damaged by loud noise?

Inside your inner ear, you have your cochlea which houses some small hair cells. As we get older, these naturally begin to deteriorate in some people which creates a hearing loss. This is known as age related hearing loss. This affects mainly people over 70. Loud noise can also cause damage to these hair cells. This could happen immediately after an exceptionally loud noise or over a period of time by consistently exposing yourself to noise levels over 80 decibels.

Can you prevent hearing damage at loud events?

Yes! Obviously wearing ear plugs will help to protect your hearing, but many people chose not to as they think it will affect their listening experience. This is not the case. Ear plugs have a noise-reduction rating (NRR) which tell you how many dB they will reduce the noise level by. NRR 22dB ear plugs will reduce the noise level by 22dB. So, if you were attending an event where the noise level is 100dB, this would be reduced to 78dB making the overall noise level for you a much safer level. This level would still be loud enough for you to enjoy the atmosphere.

Ear plugs are a great defence against noise-induced hearing loss.

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