Do you feel helpless if you leave home without your earphones? Then, my friend, you are suffering from an addiction that doesn’t have a name but only harmful effects.

If you are one of those people who have a habit of using their headphones while commuting in the metro, buses, autos or even in the office while working on their computers and laptops, (basically, earphones are the basis of your survival throughout the day), then you are in terrible danger.

According to World Health Organisation (WHO)’s study, researchers found that more than 1 billion young people at risk of hearing damage from listening to loud music. This report suggested that nearly half people, who aged 12 to 35, were at risk of hearing damage because of loud music, which includes live music concerts or their own personal devices.

At the same time, experts are warning that new technology such as MP3 players and in-ear earphones is making it easier for people to blow out their eardrums.

Dr. Shelly Chadha, an expert in hearing loss prevention for the WHO in Geneva, found that any more than 15 minutes of daily exposure to music louder than 85 decibels could cause serious problems in a relatively short period of time.

“We have bones inside the ear which are responsible for hearing and when we are exposed to loud sounds it damages them,” she said.

“If one is exposed to sounds which are 85 decibels, it would sound like if you were sitting inside your car in heavy traffic. That level of sound one can actually listen to safely for up to eight hours.

“But if you were to go on increasing the sound, and if you’re listening to your music at 100 decibels, that would sound something like what a lawnmower would sound like.

“If you’re exposed to that intensity of sound, you can listen to it only for about 15 minutes or less than 15 minutes, and if you listen for longer than this on a daily basis, it’s bound to damage your hearing cells.”

Turn the music down, make sure you’re doing it for much less time, and less loud.