Check Your Hygiene: Ototoxins

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Check Your Hygiene

Did you know that some chemicals can cause Hearing Loss? Exposure to a number of common industrial chemicals and some medications can cause hearing loss or make the effect of noise on hearing worse. These are called ototoxic substances.

How is that possible? Ototoxic substances absorbed into the bloodstream may damage the cochlea in the inner ear and/or the auditory pathways to the brain, leading to hearing loss and tinnitus. Hearing loss is more likely if exposure is to a combination of substances or a combination of the substance and noise.

What are some common ototoxins? Lead, carbon monoxide, ethanol, white spirits, trichloroethylene are just a few. These chemicals are commonly found in painting, printing, boat building, furniture making, manufacturing, leather and petroleum industries.

Where can I go for more info?

 Glad you asked. There are some great resources here and here as a start.

Who is the best person to ask to help me? Ask your friendly Occupational Hygienist!

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