Hearing Damage, Troops In Iraq, Afghan Hits Epidemic Stage

Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by Skynet, Mar 16, 2008.

Welcome to the Army Rumour Service, ARRSE

The UK's largest and busiest UNofficial military website.

The heart of the site is the forum area, including:

  1. Hearing Damage Among American Troops In Iraq, Afghanistan Hits Epidemic Stage

    Roadside bombs, firefights are the biggest culprits, say U.S. military officials

    By Associated Press Writer , Chelsea J. Carter Published on 3/16/2008
    By Denis Poroy
    U.S. Army Sgt. Ryan Kahlor listens for sounds as his hearing is tested by audiologist Derin Wester, right, at Balboa Navy Medical Center in San Diego, Feb. 6, 2008. Kahlor's hearing was damaged by exposure to multiple IAD blasts in Iraq. Many soldiers and Marines returning from Iraq and Afghanistan are suffering from noise-induced hearing loss, a condition audiological specialists now consider an "epidemic" within the military.

    San Diego — Soldiers and Marines caught in roadside bombings and firefights in Iraq and Afghanistan are coming home in epidemic numbers with permanent hearing loss and ringing in their ears, prompting the military to redouble its efforts to protect the troops from noise.

    Hearing damage is the No. 1 disability in the war on terror, according to the Department of Veterans Affairs, and some experts say the true toll could take decades to become clear. Nearly 70,000 of the more than 1.3 million troops who have served in the two war zones are collecting disability for tinnitus, a potentially debilitating ringing in the ears, and more than 58,000 are on disability for hearing loss, the VA said.
    More on the link
    http://www.theday.com/re.aspx?re=58ab7827-3d33-4032-a585-4fce03a64808
     
  2. I spent my 6 months wearing ear defenders just in case! :D
     
  3. Again and sadly to say this is not new.

    Both with hearing and brain injuries with all the munitions going off so close!

    Where is the RA when you want them?
     
  4. Listening to Ipods whilst stagging on, must be up there too.
     
  5. I sense a Gunner Ear joke coming on.........
     
  6. noise induced hearing loss and tinnitus used to make up a fair proportion of the claims for a war disablement pension when i worked there twenty years ago (Veterans agency or whatever its called now).

    It was by far the most common disability suffered by forces personnel, most of the claimants back then were from WW2,Korea and national service and had been out of the forces for years but the affliction had only become evident or more profound as they were reaching their twilight years.
    A lot of old timers just put it down to getting old and didnt realise it was caused by their service years before, it was usually the RBL who would convince them to bang in a claim, a lot of them to proud to do so though, god bless em.
     
  7. There's a Gunner here? I did not hear him come in...

    Tish Ba Boom
     
  8. So what precautions are taken to safeguard hearing on operations?
     
  9. Were you on tour, or just sat around the house?
     
  10. Biped

    Biped LE Book Reviewer

    The only thing you can do is to wear 'smart' ear defenders (not the big electronic ones) that allow normal sounds to come through, but block out loud noises. That way, ops orders and comms can be heard, but your hearing is protected. It won't stop your brain rattling around in your skull when something goes off next to you, but at least you won't lose your hearing.
     
  11. As most civvie sportsmen know, there are many types available commercially - eg the one-size earplugs, or the custom-moulded ones made by several companies that can even be fitted with audio mikes as well as just sound-damping baffles. As with - perhaps - orthotic insoles, every serviceman should be fitted up with a set. Then again, that would cost money, and deaf/crippled soldiers are probably cheaper 'cos they don't claim....
     
  12. I'm a little out of date now are the current issued ear defenders up to the job. Certainly the ones I had in my day were not. Have we moved on?
     
  13. I have these:
    http://censdigital.com/
    (It's a flash site)

    They are good - and ought to be considering how much money they were but I find then fatiguing after 4-5 hours. You just really want to get them out. Better than any alternative though. T

    They eat batteries like mad and are probably too fragile for operational use. I think in action I'd probably do without them. Could be of more use though for all the other noisy environments like vehicles etc. I suppose the Arty use proper ear defence most of the time.
     
  14. The current ear defenders are very good, but not much use when patrolling. Back in the 80s (christ, I'm an old fart!) we had the push in the ear types, they were absolutely fcuking useless. Consequently I suffer from NIHL, unfortunately I miss the Gobments new criteria by 5dB in my right ear to be able to get the one-off payment that they dish out.
     
  15. The current ear defenders are very good, but not much use when patrolling. Back in the 80s (christ, I'm an old fart!) we had the push in the ear types, they were absolutely fcuking useless. Consequently I suffer from NIHL, unfortunately I miss the Gobments new criteria by 5dB in my right ear to be able to get the one-off payment that they dish out.

    I was given a one off payment but I must say if I knew what I know now I would have been much more aware of the long term effects. Knowledge is power!