First Advisor

Deanna K. Meinke

Second Advisor

Donald Finan

First Committee Member

Diane Erdbruegger

Degree Name

Doctor of Audiology

Document Type

Scholarly Project

Date Created



Percussionists are at risk for noise-induced hearing loss. They are especially at risk because of the type of sound produced by their instrument – impact noise. The quick onset and offset times combined with the high peak intensity levels can create permanent damage to the auditory system. Damage to the auditory system because of excessive exposure to music is called a music-induced hearing disorder (MIHD).

A MIHD may manifest as many different permanent disorders including music-induced hearing loss, tinnitus, decreased sound tolerance, diplacusis, or dysacusis. Symptoms of these disorders may affect the musicians in their art and their jobs as many musicians rely on their perception of sound and music to play their instruments. Sound exposure can be damaging depending on two factors – the intensity level that the musician is exposed to and the duration of the exposure. Reducing the intensity level of the sound and the duration of the exposure can help protect the musician from permanent auditory damage. Many products on the market offer a safer listening and playing experience for musicians including percussion-specific equipment.

If auditory damage has already occurred, the musician should visit an audiologist who can provide them with care for their MIHD and education about safe sound exposure limits. Best practice guidelines for the audiologist are outlined in Chapter II of the document and include thorough education and verified care and services. Music-induced hearing disorders are preventable. It is the duty of the audiologist to spread awareness and education to percussionists and all musicians for the prevention of MIHD.

Abstract Format



90 pages

Rights Statement

Copyright is held by the author.