UBC Theses and Dissertations

UBC Theses Logo

UBC Theses and Dissertations

Sources and patterns of noise exposure in teenagers and undergraduates Byberg Ruckle, Charlotte Marie


The present study was undertaken in order to investigate the sources and patterns of noise exposure in teenagers and undergraduates, and also to look for signs of decreased hearing sensitivity, which might be related to noise exposure. Information was obtained regarding the noise exposure habits of this population through a noise exposure history questionnaire, activity diary, and a 13 hour dosimetry sample. Thresholds were obtained for all subjects using pure tone air and bone conduction audiometry at octave frequencies from 250 to 8000 Hz and inter octave frequencies above 1000 Hz. Middle ear function was checked using immittance audiometry including tympanometry and screening ipsilateral acoustic reflexes at 1000 Hz. The results indicated that the sources and patterns of noise exposure for both teenagers and undergraduates were fairly similiar. The major steady state sources of exposure for all subjects were television and amplified music. The major impulse sources of exposure were firecrackers and rifles. Mean eight hour equivalent dosimetry levels for teenagers were 84.9 dBA. It was found that 50 % of the teenagers had dosimetry levels exceeding the mean level. Only 4 % of subjects from either group reported regular use of hearing protection in noisy conditions. Thresholds for all otologically normal subjects were found to be within normal limits (25 dB HL). The poorest mean thresholds for both teenagers and undergraduates were found at 6000 Hz. Correlations between thresholds at 6000 Hz and dosimetry levels, selected steady state sources and selected impulse sources did not indicate a significant relationship between any of these variables. Dosimetry levels obtained in the current study were higher than those obtained by previous studies and indicate that further investigation in this area is warranted. The finding of poorer thresholds at 6000 Hz was in agreement with the findings of previous studies but the current study did not show a strong relationship between noise exposure and auditory thresholds for this population.

Item Media

Item Citations and Data


For non-commercial purposes only, such as research, private study and education. Additional conditions apply, see Terms of Use https://open.library.ubc.ca/terms_of_use.