Awareness of Noise‑Induced Hearing Loss among Residents in a Metropolitan City in South‑South Nigeria
Background: Exposure to loud noise and its attendant health and social effects is a public health problem. Its significance has not been adequately
determined in developing countries. Noise-induced hearing loss is permanent and can be acquired at home, schools, concerts, churches, mosques,
sporting events, and at workplaces. The objective of this study is to assess respondents’ awareness of noise‑induced hearing loss, experiential
symptoms and sources of noise pollution in a Metropolitan City in South-South, Nigeria.
Methods: Across‑sectional descriptive study using interviewee questionnaire was employed. The respondents comprising of secondary school pupils, undergraduates, tricycle riders, and staff of the tertiary institution who participated at awareness campaign programs on World Hearing Day, World Family Day, and at a religious crusade ground in a tertiary institutions. Data were analyzed using IBM statistical product and service solution version 26.0.
Results: There were 274 respondents, age range from 10 to 74 years, 73.7% (n = 202) were male and 26.3% (n = 72) female, male:female = 2.8:1. The overall level of noise‑induced hearing loss (NIHL) awareness was 69.34% (n = 190). The greater proportion of respondents 236 (86.13%) knew that
excessive noise could cause hearing loss. The common symptoms experienced by the respondents were 147 (53.6%) hyperacusis and tinnitus 142 (51.8%).
Conclusion/Recommendation: Awareness it NIHL was greater among male, undergraduates between the ages of 20 and 29 years. Children’s toys were poorly reported as a source of noise. There was poor awareness of the incurable nature of NIHL. A continuous public health education on sources and prevention of NIHL is advocated for early evaluation and intervention.
Keywords: Awareness, hearing loss, noise‑induced, sources, symptoms