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My name is Dr. Emilio Cortez, I am a Ph.D. not an M.D. I am with the Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA hearingloss.org) and the co-chair of a relatively new committee, "Turn Down the VolumeMy name is Dr. Emilio Cortez, I am a Ph.D. not an M.D. I am with the Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA hearingloss.org) and the co-chair of a relatively new committee, "Turn Down the Volume." Currently I am looking for information about volume limiters to be added to existing music systems. Any specific information about volume limiters would be greatly appreciated. Like Ms. Cobin, I too have been to exercise classes where the volume of the music was well above 85 decibels. My target of concern has been the local YMCAs where I have attended more than 13 sites and found that a number of instructors have been been playing music as loud as 103 decibels. When asking the instructors about the music volume, here is what I found: Not one instructor knew about a safe decibel level, not one instructor wore ear plugs, and the majority of the instrutors blatantly disregarded my warnings about dangerous decibel levels. In one case, even though I am a member of the YMCA, I was ejeccted from a Zumba class because I had a decibel meter and I was taking a reading during a class. In the case of the YMCA, their medical advisory board has published an excellent statement, but the information has not been effectively communicated down to mid management and ultimately down to the instructor level. The opposition to lowering the volume is strong. Some instructors, who have evidently already lost hearing, prefer very loud music, and unfortunately some of the class participants are just as convinced that louder is better. A YMCA director who knows the perils of dangerous decibels had to go into a Zumba class and physically turn down the volume, but just two minutes later the instructor and/or students had turned up the volume to its previous setting; thus my interest in music volume limiters that can not be tampered with by unwilling instructors and/or participants who choose to ignore the perils of noise-induced hearing loss. With regard to the information I am disseminating, I prefer under 85 decibels as a safe listening level. As a Zumba practioner myself, I can still hear the music and keep up with the instructor's moves even while I'm wearing ear plugs. Louder does not mean better, but it does mean louder. I suggest under 85 decibels as a better safeguard to hearing health. Be decibel wise: under 85 keep your hearing alive! I applaud the information and care that went into writing this article; I only wish that more of the American public would take the information seriously. An excellent website that I have found helpful has been www.dangerousdecibels.org, and yes, you can get a free app for a decibel meter at the app store and android users can go to the play store as well. By the way, watch out for children's headphones that do not clearly indicate 85 decibel limits right on the packaging. Crayola earphones are fine and can be purchased at Target. For ear buds also be sure that there is a limiter so that the children do not exceed hearing more than 85 decibels; I prefer under 85 decibels. I can be reached at email@example.com if you have information for me or if I can be of help to you in any way. Sincerely, Emilio Cortez ... see more