Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Researchers urge caution when buying noisy toys

Date:
December 17, 2011
Source:
University of California - Irvine
Summary:
While Road Rippers Lightning Rods, Let's Rock Elmo and the I Am T-Pain musical microphone might be sought-after gifts this holiday season, parents should ensure that their children don't risk permanent hearing damage by misusing them.

While Road Rippers Lightning Rods, Let's Rock Elmo and the I Am T-Pain musical microphone might be sought-after gifts this holiday season, parents should ensure that their children don't risk permanent hearing damage by misusing them.

Researchers from UC Irvine's Department of Otolaryngology measured the noise levels of two dozen popular toys in stores and purchased the 10 loudest for precise gauging in a soundproof booth at UC Irvine Medical Center. They found that all exceeded 90 decibels and several reached 100 or more, equivalent to the noise of a chain saw, subway train or power mower.

"Generally, toys are safe if used properly," said Dr. Hamid Djalilian, associate professor of otolaryngology and director of neurotology and skull base surgery. "We tested the sound levels at the speaker and again at 12 inches, which is about the length of a toddler's arm."

But problems can arise if a noisy toy is held too close to the ears, he said: "Children are very sensitive to loud and high-pitched sounds. Unfortunately, hearing loss from noise damage is permanent and not currently curable."

According to the American Academy of Otolaryngology, unprotected exposure to sounds above 85 decibels for a prolonged period can lead to hearing impairment. Two factors contribute to this, Djalilian noted: loudness and duration. The louder a sound is, the less time it takes to cause hearing loss.

He suggested that someone buying a noisy toy for a child pay attention to the speaker's location -- under the item is often better than on top. Djalilian also recommended that an adult hold the toy as a youngster would and listen to its sound. "If it hurts your ears," he said, "then it's probably too loud for a child."

Toys tested / Decibel level at the speaker / Decibel level 12 inches from the speaker:

  • Road Rippers Lightning Rods / 108 / 68
  • I Am T-Pain microphone / 101 / 64
  • Tonka Mighty Motorized Fire Truck / 100 / 69
  • Marvel Super Shield Captain America / 98 / 69
  • Whac-A-Mole game / 95 / 69
  • Tapz electronic reflex game / 95 / 65
  • Sesame Street Let's Rock Elmo / 95 / 74
  • VTech Magical Learning Wand / 94 / 69
  • Toy Story Buzz Lightyear Cosmic Blaster / 93 / 60
  • Green Lantern Colossal Cannon / 92 / 67

Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of California - Irvine. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of California - Irvine. "Researchers urge caution when buying noisy toys." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 17 December 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/12/111216174444.htm>.
University of California - Irvine. (2011, December 17). Researchers urge caution when buying noisy toys. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/12/111216174444.htm
University of California - Irvine. "Researchers urge caution when buying noisy toys." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/12/111216174444.htm (accessed April 21, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Monday, April 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Breakfast Foods Are Getting Pricier

Breakfast Foods Are Getting Pricier

AP (Apr. 21, 2014) Breakfast is now being served with a side of sticker shock. The cost of morning staples like bacon, coffee and orange juice is on the rise because of global supply problems. (April 21) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Nine-Month-Old Baby Can't Open His Mouth

Nine-Month-Old Baby Can't Open His Mouth

Newsy (Apr. 19, 2014) Nine-month-old Wyatt Scott was born with a rare disorder called congenital trismus, which prevents him from opening his mouth. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
'Holy Grail' Of Weight Loss? New Find Could Be It

'Holy Grail' Of Weight Loss? New Find Could Be It

Newsy (Apr. 18, 2014) In a potential breakthrough for future obesity treatments, scientists have used MRI scans to pinpoint brown fat in a living adult for the first time. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Little Progress Made In Fighting Food Poisoning, CDC Says

Little Progress Made In Fighting Food Poisoning, CDC Says

Newsy (Apr. 18, 2014) A new report shows rates of two foodborne infections increased in the U.S. in recent years, while salmonella actually dropped 9 percent. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins