CategoriesFrequently Asked Questions

Does bone conduction damage hearing?

Bone conduction headphones have become increasingly popular, and a common concern is their impact on hearing health. Here’s a breakdown to set your mind at ease:

Bone conduction, when used properly, is generally considered safe for your hearing. Unlike traditional headphones that deliver sound through air vibrations to your eardrum, bone conduction transmits vibrations through your cheekbones to your inner ear.

The key thing to remember is volume control:

  • Excessive volume: Regardless of headphone type, listening at loud volumes for extended periods can damage the delicate hair cells in your cochlea (inner ear), leading to hearing loss. This applies to bone conduction headphones as well.

Here’s what makes bone conduction potentially safer in some ways:

  • Bypasses the eardrum: Bone conduction doesn’t put direct pressure on your eardrum, which can be a concern with traditional headphones at high volumes.

However, it’s important to be mindful of these factors:

  • Bone conduction still stimulates the cochlea: Even though the eardrum isn’t directly involved, loud volumes can still damage the hair cells within the cochlea over time.

Here are some tips for safe listening with bone conduction headphones:

  • Follow the 60/60 rule: Listen at no more than 60% volume for a maximum of 60 minutes continuously.
  • Be aware of your surroundings: Since bone conduction allows you to hear ambient noise, you might unknowingly crank up the volume to compensate for external sounds. Pay attention to how loud your music actually is.
  • Take breaks: Give your ears a rest every hour to avoid fatigue.

Overall, bone conduction headphones are a safe option for listening when used responsibly. Just remember to prioritise moderate volume levels and follow safe listening practices.

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