A study in Australia has found that more than one in two farmers will suffer premature hearing loss, the
Australian Broadcasting Commission reports.
The research was published by Australia's National Rural Health Alliance.
Chelsea Scott, an audiologist for Australian Hearing, told the ABC that long-term exposure to harmful noise levels put farmers at a higher risk of premature hearing loss compared to other professions.
"We hear a lot of complaints that family members are mumbling," she said.
Ms. Scott said tractors, workshop machinery, firearms and livestock noise were some of the most common causes of premature hearing loss among farmers.
Australian Hearing in the state of Victoria is taking a hearing test booth to local livestock sale yards to conduct free testing. At a recent testing of 19 farmers, 14 had hearing outside the normal range.
Farmsafe Australia concluded that premature hearing loss could affect as many as two-thirds of farmers.
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