Ears Healing After Concert

Hello everyone,

I was at a concert last Saturday. It was the Jimi Hendrix Memorial festival in Seattle. When I was watching the performers I was right up near the speakers and I was talking to my friend so my head was tilted so only the left ear was hearing the speakers. It is now 4 days later and my ear still feels kinda clogged. Like its missing some bass or something. The ringing stopped a day after so I don’t think there is any permenant damage. What do you all think? My ears are pretty sensitive right now to loud things. This must be a sign that they’re healing.

The amount of damage is a question of what level of sound were you exposed to and for how long. If you allowed injury to the hearing mechanisms of your ears, some of the effects may be temporary and some will be permanent. In my case it was a very loud sound (gunshot) for a relative short time (one box of 20 rounds in about 15 minutes) with a resulting loss of a considerable chunk of my mid and high frequency hearing. For your sake I hope for the best.


Since you had ringing in your ears after the concert was over, you most likely did do some permanent damage, though your hearing may seem to you to “get back to normal” in the near future. (That may not be your hearing returning to normal, if that happens, as much as it is your brain adjusting to the slightly reduced input. What’s different seems normal to you again.) The best way to enhance the healing process in the near term is to avoid more loud sounds while your hearing is recovering.

What’s permanently done from that concert is done. The most important thing now is to resolve not to keep repeating that experience. Repeated exposure to sound at volumes louder than 90 dB definitely increases your chances of needing hearing aids in middle age if not sooner, as many of us (including me) on this board know all too well. Sitting in the cheap seats far back from the stage but also wearing earplugs can allow you to still enjoy live music. Foam earplugs rated at -25 to -30dB are cheap and are best, but these will make the sound seem muffled and give a full-ear feeling that some people strongly dislike. For $10 on amazon, you can get a pair of Etymotic earplugs that are more comfortable but reduce sound by 20 dB. They do change the frequency response of the sound somewhat, but to a lesser degree than foam earplugs. I keep a pair of Etymotics attached to my keyring, so I don’t forget them–some come with a case designed for that. Audiologists can also supply custom made earplugs at a higher price that musicians like to use for even less change to the frequency response curve. It’s important to read the packaging and learn to insert all earplugs correctly to get the rated benefit. (You don’t get the rated protection if you just push them into your ear.)

I wish you the best about getting your hearing back and learning a lesson in the process.

One day of shooting 357 without ear protection when I was 18 messed my ears up. I couldn’t hear anything for 3 or 4 days and have had tinnitus ever since.

Good luck and I hope your hearing comes back 100%.

I really can’t add anything to what has already been said. But something to keep in mind is that what you perceive to be a return to normal hearing may in fact not be the case. Hopefully you have learned something from this and hopefully you have dodged a bullet.

Hello all,

Thanks for the advice. I also want to apologize for this thread because it may seem misleading. The ringing stopped the day after the concert like it usually does but my left ear still feels like its clogged. Like when someone has a cold. I have seen improvement today. I talked to a friend and she had a sore ear too but it returned to normal so I have faith in that.

The ringing stopped the day after the concert, like it usually does?:confused::rolleyes::eek:

Amen, brother. Unfortunately, we’re singing to the choir here. The unsaved remain so.

Like other loud music and other noises has brought on Tinnitus in my later years. Pete Townsend from The Who is still suffering from a one time incident and prolonged exposure.

We need to be careful with our ears.

I remember back around '74 going to an Elton John concert and sitting pretty close to the stage. That was really the first time I ever listened to anything extremely loud for a fairly long duration.

When I woke the next morning and all the next day or two, I suffered the same thing you are explaining, only it was in both ears!:frowning:

This is how I lost my hearing many years ago. I was at a concert with terribly loud music and I was right next to the speakers. When I came out afterwards I had the ringing in the ears. The left ear was dead after that and I have a severe to profound loss in my right ear . I must say though that I have a family history of hearing loss so I could have been more prone to permanent damage then others. Good luck.