The use of earphones has become popular among the youth in Ghana. These come in a variety of shapes and sizes that range from small ear buds to big headphones.
In the Ghana Institute of Journalism, there are many uses for earphones.
Some students prefer to use them in their recording and editing of sound while others prefer to make phone calls or listen to music, radio programmes and books with them. Most students' GIJ Online interviewed, claimed they prefered to use the smaller earphones to the larger ones for their size and portability.
These earphones also creates that environment in which users turn to socially isolate themselves from people.
Despite its numerous uses, earphones are not without their disadvantages.
Hearing Specialist Dr. David Schelssel maintains that, high exposure to loud music and noise often poses a threat to the ear.
Loud music directed to the ear causes numbness, deafness, pain and permanent damage to the ear.
According to Ms. Nyarko, a health personnel at the Okomfo Anokye Teaching Hospital, the stated range of human hearing is "20Hz to 20KHz frequency of sound but under ideal laboratory condition, the human ear can take sound as low as 12Hz and as high as 28KHz." According to her, when the sound from the earphone was higher than the frequency of sound the ear is supposed to take, "it disturbs the organs of the ear such as the auditory canal, and can result in hearing impediment."
She further explained that, the earphones picked up organisms due to its tiny nature and could cause infection.
"Sharing the gadget also helps in spreading the bacteria from one person to another," she added.
"Since manufacturers want users to enjoy their device, the gadget is designed in a way to fit in the ear canal. As a result there is less or no passage for air. People who use earphones often experience extra ear wax, tinnitus, ear numbness and pain in the ear," she explained.
She advised that "people should avoid using tiny earphones that goes directly into the ear canal." She recommended the use of bigger headphones but cautioned that the music should not be too loud.
"Sharing of earphones should be avoided to reduce the risk of infection," she stressed.
Story by: Asieduwaa Ntiamoah Darling