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Biology: The Unity and Diversity o...

15th Edition
Cecie Starr + 3 others
ISBN: 9781337408332

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BuyFindarrow_forward

Biology: The Unity and Diversity o...

15th Edition
Cecie Starr + 3 others
ISBN: 9781337408332
Textbook Problem
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Occupational Hearing Loss Frequent exposure to loud noise of a particular pitch can cause loss of hair cells in the part of the cochlea that responds to that pitch. People who work with or around noisy machinery are at risk for such frequency-specific hearing loss. Taking precautions such as using ear plugs to reduce sound exposure is important. Noise-induced hearing loss can be prevented, but once it occurs it is irreversible because dead or damaged hair cells are not replaced.

FIGURE 33.11 shows the threshold decibel levels at which sounds of different frequencies can be detected by an average 25-year-old carpenter, a 50-year-old carpenter, and a 50-year-old who has not been exposed to on-the-job noise. Sound frequencies are given in hertz (cycles per second). The more cycles per second, the higher the pitch.

Chapter 33, Problem 4DAA, Occupational Hearing Loss Frequent exposure to loud noise of a particular pitch can cause loss of

FIGURE 33.11 Effects of age and occupational noise exposure on hearing. The graph shows the threshold hearing capacities (in decibels) for sounds of different frequencies (given in hertz) in a 25-year-old carpenter (blue), a 50-year-old carpenter (red), and a 50-year-old who did not have any on-the-job noise exposure (brown).

Based on these data would you conclude that the hearing decline in the 50-year-old carpenter was caused by age or by job-related noise exposure?

Summary Introduction

To determine: Whether the hearing decline in the 50-year old carpenter was caused by age or by job-related noise exposure.

Introduction: Hearing refers to the perception of sound. The loudness of sound is measured in decibels. The frequency of sound is measured as the number of wave cycles per second or hertz. The range of frequency that can be heard by human ears is 20-20,000 hertz. The hearing ability of individuals varies depending on their age, gender, and occupation. Continuous exposure to loud noises can damage hair cells in the inner ear that may result in a temporary or permanent hearing loss.

Explanation

Refer to Fig. 33.11, “Effects of age and occupational noise exposure on hearing” in the textbook. The graphical representation shows the threshold hearing capacities for sounds of different frequencies in an average 25-year old carpenter (denoted as blue), a 50-year old carpenter (denoted as red), and a 50-year old who has not exposed to on-the-job noise (denoted as brown). Hearing capacities are measured in decibels and sound frequencies are measured in hertz...

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