Trumpet Playing and Hearing Loss

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by eoliver, Apr 26, 2005.

  1. ctm2aud

    ctm2aud New Friend

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    Apr 15, 2006
    Newport News, VA
    To DDBELL,
    Losing 30 percent of hearing in one ear from trumpet playing is not a typical noise induced loss. PM me and I can talk to you about this. I am a trumpet playing audiologist.

    Regards,
    Dave Taylor
     
  2. ctm2aud

    ctm2aud New Friend

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    Apr 15, 2006
    Newport News, VA
    I didn't notice the original date for the post from DDBELL (two years or more ago) so she probably isn't going to get my reply. For those of you with hearing loss or the beginnings of hearing loss from noise exposure (yes, even when it's the beautiful sound your band makes we call it noise exposure!) you can look up a local audiologist to discuss options for protecting your ears from further loss. Musician's ear plugs are only part of the solution.

    Regards,
    Dave Taylor

    Flip Oakes Celebration
    Olds Fullerton L-12 flugel
     
  3. bigaggietrumpet

    bigaggietrumpet Mezzo Forte User

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    Jan 23, 2004
    Nazareth, PA
    So what about etymotic earplugs? I don't use 'em very often because of the way it makes the horn sound to me, but recently I've thought about it considering I have 3 trombones going all out behind me in the basketball band. Do they do a decent enough job, or should I look into something a little better?
     
  4. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    Somehow I get the feeling that the trumpet world is completely off track! Everyone seems to want the biggest fattest sound on earth and to be able to fry entire string sections at whim, but we need microphones and stage monitors to hear ourselves, most conductors want us to play much more softly and when playing softly, we still get comments that we are covering up the woodwinds. If I remember correctly, there was even mention in another thread that auditioning players were dismissed for uncontrolled loud (among other things).
    Here we have testimony that this is bad for our health and that we need EARPLUGS to perform live music. Is nobody awake?
    I think the solution is to put music back into the middle and not entertainment of the deaf! I just read an article about proper amplification of stage shows and one of the key parameters is to get the competitive atmosphere OFF of the stage. In-Ear monitors are better than wedges, but maybe even better is a review of whether 1,000,000 Watts really heightens the musical experience. Sure a basketball game is roudy, but is that a call to leave musical common sense behind? I would hope that the band is never too drunk to tell the difference or care!
    I think the answer is in soul searching, not in escalation.
    In any case to get back to the original post: Ones health ALWAYS comes first. I would think that there are enough playing opportunities that do not require extraordinary protection. Maybe a switch to cornet or flugelhorn would be a start!
     
  5. oldlou

    oldlou Forte User

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    Hey Dave; I have been fitted by an audiologist with extremely expensive,( $2,870 ) over the ear digital hearing aids for a severe industrially caused hearing loss in both ears. I have tried them at band practice and can not accurately hear pitch. Another problem that I have and, that my audiologist doesn't seem to be responding to is the horrendous hair growth in my ears that make the hearing aids so uncomfortable that I haven't put those plugs into my ears in over a year. Do you have any remedies for my personal problems? I know that I am constantly making a nuisance of myself by asking everyone,especially soft voiced women and girls to repeat themselves. It is so bad that I don't understand what most women on T.V. say. I can tell that they are speaking, but, I don't understand a word that they say. Raising the volume on the T.V. has two effects. My wife gets angry about the loudness and I still don't understand what is being said on the T.V.. I have educated the two conductors that I play under that they MUST look at us when they talk and that they must never say such as "go back to D", without adding D as in dog. I can't tell the difference between hearing the letters B,C,D,E,G,or P, without the conductor using that letter in some word that definately identifies the proper letter.


    OLDLOU>>
     
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2007
  6. bigaggietrumpet

    bigaggietrumpet Mezzo Forte User

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    Jan 23, 2004
    Nazareth, PA
    You make some outstanding points, and I agree that the musical world, brass playing especially, has really seemed to have forgotten how to play at lower dynamics. I'd also like to point out that we don't tolerate alcohol before games, just simply because you brought it up. However, I think it's worth remembering that in a basketball environment, even with control, you will maintain a dynamic level around forte on average. And since when have trombones ever learned to lay back? So even at controlled volume of forte, when a trombone bell...or 3, is 2 feet behind my head (and I'm a fairly tall guy, so I'm right in the line of fire), I'm putting duress on my ears. I also have a really annoying cymbal player behind my head in our symphonic band (I just can't catch a break, huh?), and I hate to think the damage he's done.

    Now in a stage performance, or certainly in a symphonic performance, you're absolutely right, we shouldn't be having this kind of problem.
     
  7. screaminhigh911

    screaminhigh911 New Friend

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    Jan 8, 2006
    Vancouver, Washington
    I own some of the westone ear plugs and as far as sound it really does change. It took some getting used to, but I only use them for pep band. I haven't had any pitch problems with them, but again pep band doesn't really require good pitch. My dad is a hearing aid dealer and he got me these pretty easily. I would assume any audiologist or other hearing aid dealer would be able to get these for you. However, they are kind of expensive, but well worth the cost.

    Ethan
     
  8. ctm2aud

    ctm2aud New Friend

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    The benefit provided by Etymotic Research plugs depends on the little round disk you plug into the outside of them. Depending on which disk you choose, it will reduce sound by 9 dB, 15 dB or 25 dB. You can also have several sets of disks for different reductions in different situations. You may want to experiment to find out which works best in which situation. Another thing about earplugs is that you have to use them a lot so your brain can get used to how the music sounds with them in.

    Regards,
    Dave Taylor
     
  9. ctm2aud

    ctm2aud New Friend

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    Apr 15, 2006
    Newport News, VA
    One of the problems with modern digital hearing aids is that they are designed with many features that specifically address speech perception. These features can distort perception of the music you make with your trumpet unless they are turned off. I don't know about yours but many modern digital hearing aids can be programmed with a "music program" that you can select that takes away features that distort music. Another thing about hearing aids is that it takes lots of time using them before your brain gets used to the change in the way things sound, including music.

    With hearing aids that expensive your audiologist should be able to put in a music program.

    The ear hair is a pretty easy thing to address. You can buy a battery powered ear hair trimmer, your audiologist may have one or know where you can get one, or at last resort, you can go to an ENT physician to get it trimmed.

    Regards,
    Dave Taylor
     
  10. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    As a matter of fact, I normally do not play amplified (even big band jazz). I did a couple gigs in August and September with a band and got the entire wind section to cooperate though.
    During the sound check, the technician cranked the monitors. After asking him to turn the monitor down, the first thing he said was "it is no chamber concert on stage". That kind of got me interested in making a point. I removed the clip on mic, let it dangle from the back of my music stand close to the monitor and said that I would reattach it after he reduced the noise. I was standing next to the keyboard and the bass had a couple of 4x 15" on stage, drums are audible any way so all I needed was the vocals. Because I was only subbing, I had nothing to lose. The singer always had had an issue with the volume, but as you said was worried about losing a steady gig. He jumped on the bandwagon and about 10 minutes before the opening tune, I had a useful mix. During the first tune the idiot turned the monitor up again, I removed my clip on and he got the message. It was not "quiet" on stage, but much better and the horn section kicked ass. They were much tighter than before and we got complements for it.
    My take: it is not a rock concert on stage and earplugs do not make any musical contributions. If the audience wants pain, that should not be my problem. A professional mix complements professional players and less is ALWAYS more. Why put up with health hazards? That idiot on the mix board won't give you your hearing back or pay disability. Just don't go it alone. A win/win situation is always best, but if someone has to lose, I don't want it to be me. Hearing loss is a one way street.
     
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2007

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