It’s not uncommon for people to underestimate their need for noise control and isolation. Even if loud or constant noises don’t irritate you, that doesn’t mean they don’t take a toll. Apart from volume, hearing damage can occur due to frequency and duration of exposure. That means a noise doesn’t have to be especially loud, but if its constant or extended it can have a long-term effect.
“A single episode of very loud noise can do damage, but so can not-so-loud noise that extends over a long time. Decibel readings offer the most convenient way of measuring noise exposure. For context: Ordinary conversation between two people is approximately 60 decibels. At the other end of the spectrum, the pain threshold — where damage can be done quickly and where you’d be inclined to cover your ears — generally starts at around 120 decibels, researchers say.”