Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Sound Intensity

  1. Aug 27, 2007 #1
    We all know that you feel pain as volume increases. Whether it is loud bass or a really loud siren you can feel the pain. Do we feel pain from noises that our ears cannot recieve. Say, a dog whistle that is out of a humans hearing range. Does it not cause pain or is it not loud enough to do the trick.
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 27, 2007 #2

    mgb_phys

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper

    No because you don't respond to it. It's not the volume but the fact that hairs in your ears can't vibrate fast enough to absorb (much) energy at that frequency.
    Although it would be possible to do damage from very high powers of ultrasonic sound.
     
  4. Aug 27, 2007 #3

    Gokul43201

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    The body can, in theory, respond to frequencies that auditory sensors are insensitive to.
     
  5. Aug 27, 2007 #4

    Danger

    User Avatar
    Gold Member

    Ultrasound can cause all kinds of pain, from headaches and toothaches right through to unconsciousness. It depends upon the power, the frequency, and harmonics.
    Infrasound generally doesn't hurt as much, but it can cause nausea, anxiety, anger, and other unpleasant conditions.
     
  6. Aug 27, 2007 #5

    mgb_phys

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper

    I was thinking that there was a different mechanism for pain as in 'Ouch thats a loud noise' and actual damage due to the absorbed power - is that correct?
     
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook

Have something to add?