Researchers at Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH) in Boston have found that hearing loss in adolescents has increased dramatically over the past 15 years, and suggest that music and devices such as the iPod may be the reason, reports “TG Daily” (

“Some risk factors, such as loud sound exposure from listening to music, may be of particular importance to adolescents,” say the authors.

The researchers looked at data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys of 12- to 19-year-olds. They found that a fifth had some evidence of hearing loss, while one in twenty had at least mild hearing loss.

Looking at the data from 1988, the team found there had been a 30% increase in the prevalence of any hearing loss, and a 70% increase in mild or worse hearing loss in the past 15 years.