Is the din really harmless? Long-term effects of non-traumatic noise on the adult auditory system

Nat Rev Neurosci. 2014 Jul;15(7):483-91. doi: 10.1038/nrn3744.


People are increasingly being exposed to environmental noise from traffic, media and other sources that falls within and outside legal limits. Although such environmental noise is known to cause stress in the auditory system, it is still generally considered to be harmless. This complacency may be misplaced: even in the absence of cochlear damage, new findings suggest that environmental noise may progressively degrade hearing through alterations in the way sound is represented in the adult auditory cortex.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Acoustic Stimulation / adverse effects*
  • Acoustic Stimulation / trends
  • Aging / physiology
  • Animals
  • Auditory Cortex / pathology
  • Auditory Cortex / physiology*
  • Environmental Exposure / adverse effects*
  • Humans
  • Noise / adverse effects*
  • Time Factors