Study Title:

Associations of Earphone Use with Tinnitus and Anxiety/Depression. Noise Health.

Study Abstract

Objective: This study aimed to investigate the association of earphone use with audiologic and psychologic factors.

Materials and methods: Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2010-2012 data were collected for participants aged ≥12 years old with earphone use ≥1 hour/day. They were matched to a control group for age, sex, income, and education level. The relationship between earphone use and the hearing thresholds of pure-tone audiometry, tinnitus, and psychologic factors such as depression and anxiety, and other quality of life variables was analyzed using multiple logistic regression tests with complex sampling.

Results: Among the participants, 22.9% (449/1955) of earphone users and 18.1% (355/1600) of control participants had tinnitus (P < 0.001). Earphone users showed 1.27-times higher odds for tinnitus (95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.09-1.50, P = 0.003). Moreover, 6.5% (128/1955) of earphone users and 5.0% (97/1600) of control participants had anxiety and depressive symptoms (P = 0.033). Earphone users showed 1.32-times higher odds for anxiety and depressive symptoms (95% CI = 1.14-1.52, P = 0.040). Nevertheless, the hearing thresholds were comparable between earphone users and control participants.

Conclusion: Earphone use was associated with tinnitus and anxiety or depressive symptoms.

Study Information

Noise Health. 2021 Oct-Dec;23(111):108-116. doi: 10.4103/nah.NAH_48_20. PMID: 34975126; PMCID: PMC8772443.

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