The National Football League is just now coming to grips with a degenerative brain disease called CTE (chronic traumatic encephalopathy). It is commonly found in athletes that participate in contact sports with concussive injuries.
The scientists don't have a lot of data to understand how early in life these changes in the brain occur. It could be happening in peewee football or it may take years of repeated trauma. They don't have any tests yet that can diagnose it except for post mortem autopsy.
There has also been a lot of study recently about early onset dementia associated with hearing loss. Apparently when you can't hear very well your brain uses all of it's ram to assemble sounds into words.
What I am curious about is whether or not we will one day find a correlation between brain disease and CNC machinery. The high frequency motors sound a lot like electronic mosquitos. The sound is very jarring. Whenever I am around a CNC machine my ears seem to ring for a bit when I leave the environment. Is it possible that extended exposure to CNC might also have neurological health effects?
My 88 year old father spent half his woodworking career as a trim sawyer.
Now has a hearing aid in one ear and a choclear implant in the other.
In my 30 plus years in this business I have spent 19 years around CNC's and their noisy vacuum pumps.
I have documented high freq. hearing loss, and I would bet most of my coworker do also.
Can't say about the association with dementia, but do know even with hearing protection there is a good bet you are still going to suffer hearing loss in this industry.
Risk of some injury exists in all occupations. Safety gear is available in most, if not all shops to protect workers employed using equipment with moving parts and rotating blades. If safety gear is not available, complaints should be made or a new job search is a good idea. If you prefer a risk free job, none come immediately to mind, but I am sure there is one or two out there.
Been wearing hearing protection religiously since my early 20's, am 60 now and so far so good. I'm also a musician so for me it was a must. A great plus to wearing them was I noticed being less fatigued. Apparently loud noise caused enough stress to cause me to tire.
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