The socioeconomic status of adolescents influences their listening habits, a study finds. Lower status increases unsafe listening habits.

A Dutch study has found that adolescents with a lower socioeconomic status were more likely to engage in unsafe listening habits compared to adolescents with a higher socioeconomic status. Risk behaviour was associated with higher odds of having unsafe listening habits as compared to no risk behaviour.

In the study, age, sex and educational levels were not significantly associated with unsafe listening habits.

Listening habits were characterised as safe or unsafe based on the weekly noise dose. Data on sociodemographic factors and traditional health risk behaviours were obtained by questionnaires.

Within the study group, 10.5% of the participants exceeded the 50% and 4.8% the 100% recommended weekly noise dose.

About the study

Participants in the study were recruited from the “Generation R study”, a population-based prospective birth cohort study in Rotterdam, the Netherlands. Adolescents aged 12–17 years who visited the research centre at the Erasmus Medical Center between May 2017 and September 2019 were invited to participate in this sub-study. A smartphone application was developed to objectively measure music listening habits among 314 adolescents.

The study, “The association of sociodemographic factors and risk behavior with unsafe use of personal listening devices in adolescents”, was published in the International Journal of Environmental Health Research.

Sources: and the International Journal of Environmental Health Research.

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