TV PRESENTER Suzi Perry, the face of premier motorcycle racing series MotoGP, has revealed that her love of motorcycling has resulted in long-term damage to her hearing.
Perry has teamed up with the Specsavers Hearing Centre in Ipswich to warn the UK’s 1.3 million motorcycle enthusiasts about the importance of regular hearing tests and the availability of instant fit and custom made hearing protection.
Research by Specsavers found that 40% of motorcyclists have experienced ringing in their ears after a long bike ride and one in four have suffered permanent damage.
Despite these statistics, only 27% of motorcyclists consider hearing protection as essential. The research also revealed that bikers spend on average, £600 on protective clothing per year but have never paid for hearing protection, which costs less than £100.
Perry, says: ‘It’s quite simple really… hearing loss when you regularly ride your bike is gradual, so you either protect your hearing now or, like me, pay the consequences with hearing loss later on.
‘Regardless of wearing a helmet, your hearing can still be damaged by the wind and engine noise, so I am urging all bikers to get their hearing checked now and buy some protection. It is just as important as your leathers or boots. Or else before you know it, you’ll be hearing ringing in your ears or turning the TV up to maximum volume.’
Hearing aid audiologist Chris Cazey, from the Specsavers Hearing Centre in Ipswich, says: ‘Prolonged exposure to loud sounds can cause noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL). This is the UK’s second most common type of hearing loss and the damage is irreversible. Motorcyclists are particularly susceptible, as wind and engine noise regularly exceed 110 decibels. In general anything over 85 decibels can harm your hearing.
‘Prevention is the key and by wearing hearing protection motorcyclists are able to spend the day on their bikes without worrying about damaging their hearing. Specsavers offers an instant fit and custom range of hearing protection, specially designed for motorcyclists. I would strongly advise anyone who suspects they have a hearing loss or are concerned about their hearing to drop in for a free hearing test and consultation.‘
For further information on free hearing tests, instant fit and custom hearing protection, please visit www.specsavers.co.uk/hearing or call 01473 210333.