According to Dr. William Luxford, medical director at the House Ear Clinic in Orange, California, the loud bang of just one Roman candle can cause acoustic trauma to an ear, and lead to a temporary or permanent drop in hearing.
Luxford says this kind of instantaneous trauma cant be treated with either medicine or surgery so, in his words, Since you cant treat it, you have to prevent it.
He recommends keeping a safe distance away from the fireworks and using earplugs if the noise becomes unbearable.
Luxford admits this type of injury is uncommon for July 4 celebrations, but insists it can and does happen especially to the folks who light and shoot off the works.
(Contact numbers available only to subscribing media or trial media users. You can request samples at the Wireless Flash web site.)
Copyright © 2005 Wireless Flash News Inc. All rights reserved. Wireless Flash® and FlashNews® are registered trademarks of Wireless Flash News Inc.