Can Subwoofers Cause Headaches? (REVEALED!)

Can Subwoofers Cause Headaches?

Can subwoofers cause headaches? Yes, those in both the medical and musical fields agree they can trigger headaches, especially migraines. Exactly how or why remains unclear since some subwoofers seem to be less aggravating than others. 

People love their music and some like it loud and with a lot of bass. This causes problems for others who suddenly develop headaches. It can also be an issue for dogs, babies, and even those who adore subwoofers. 

Read further to find out more about this phenomenon and how to protect yourself and your family. 

The Facts About Subwoofer Headaches

Noise has been scientifically proven to trigger headaches. A study published in the journal Headache shows that 79 per cent of those participating got a headache after being exposed to 50 dB of white noise. 

Noise can trigger those who typically are headache-free. It can affect those with a lower tolerance for noise more than others with more painful headaches. 

One demographic group that is super sensitive to subwoofers is autistic people. It is like hearing explosions as they feel the pressure from it as well as the sound. 

Music lovers state that, for them, subwoofers only affect their ears if they turn it up past a typical comfort level. They said it’s important to leave headroom in the volume.

Bad Equipment

However, they blame poor equipment for creating tension headaches for people and pets. There is distortion with bad equipment and that can irritate all. Animals, especially dogs, don’t particularly like other types of noises like action videos or bass turned up on a subwoofer

One subwoofer owner said they swapped out equipment and, although the new equipment produces great sound, the owner is feeling some discomfort with low-level headaches. 

Those responding said developing headaches with such equipment is possible for someone with good lower range hearing, but it is unusual. Others pointed out that ULF is being used as an infrasonic weapon, proving it can be destructive. 

Why Subwoofers Hurt Your Head

Various theories exist on why subwoofers can cause headaches in some people and not in others. Yet, none have been proven. 

The overall view is that those that have blood vessels widening faster or more than others are those most affected by subwoofers. These expanding blood vessels trigger sensory nerve fibers and those, in turn, release proteins. 

The proteins increase inflammation and that causes head pain. 

They could have nervous system hyperarousal. Hyperarousal, in a short definition, means people are sensitive to their surroundings. That includes visual, smell, or hearing stimulation. 

Hyperarousal includes some symptoms like:

  • Trouble falling asleep or waking up too early
  • Tired eyes
  • Chronic fatigue
  • An odour hypersensitivity

Another idea is that the pressure felt by a subwoofer bass is what causes headaches. It isn’t clear how this affects people but it’s thought it affects blood vessel widening.

Also Read: What does clipping mean with subwoofers?

How To Avoid Headaches From Subwoofers

Why does loud bass give me a headache_

There are some ways you can make listening to subwoofers easier to tolerate. Some suggestions are easier to apply than others. 

The first thing to try is to adjust the settings or change the positioning of the subwoofer to see if it makes a difference. It is a well-known fact that most who set up their home theatre and sound system don’t position their subwoofer correctly and that could be what’s causing the headaches.

Another solution is to test out a different brand to see if that makes it more tolerable as many believe cheaper brands may have more distortion or poor quality.

It’s the distortion or poor quality many believe are associated with headaches. 

Those who suffer from migraines may be more vulnerable to subwoofers but can look to the Hsu VTF series as a possible answer. It has many user preferences so you can experiment.

It is suggested to experiment with the “night mode” on a receiver because that keeps the sound within a loudness range that keeps percussion peaks at a tolerable level. 

This allows you to enjoy all the power that subwoofers offer without having to crank it up so loud it gives you a headache.

Another solution is to desensitize the sound. This can work for yourself, your spouse, or your pets. It’s allowing gradual exposure to the sound to get your head used to it. Turn it down for a while and, over time, gently increase it and see what the response is. 

The last resort is to avoid subwoofers altogether but that may not be a viable option if you live with someone who loves them.

Why Does Bass Give Me a Headache?

A bass drum can cause a throbbing headache in some people. Bass is Sound that has high amplitude but a low frequency, while the intensity, or loudness, of the sound wave. Bass is lowest part of the musical spectrum. Bass frequency vibrations are felt in the chest and at floor level.

Can Bass Give You a Headache?

Subwoofer bass gives a headache if the volume is too high, resulting in a loud noise. One also has to be careful when placing subwoofers near a wall. People have been known to blow up walls with their subwoofers.

Does Bass Hurt Dogs Ears?

Yes, bass can harm dogs ears. Just like humans, dogs also possess sensitive ears. And one of the common things to affect their ears is music.

Even though bass sounds are not audible to human ears, it can still hurt your pets ears. Exposure to low-frequency bass can cause temporary deafness and pain.

If your pet is exposed to high volume bass sounds, it can steal some hearing ability. However, bass sounds are unlikely to be loud enough to cause permanent damage.

Are Subwoofers Bad for Dogs?

The short answer is yes. Subwoofers are bad for dogs. Dogs can hear frequencies that humans can’t hear. The bass frequencies produced by subwoofers cause hurt dogs.

Can Music Cause Headaches?

Can Loud Music Cause Headaches? Yes, loud music and sounds can cause headaches. Differences in sound pressure levels cause changes in the blood vessels. These effects might cause pain. If you don’t have a headache, the sound pressure you are listening to maybe 80 dB.

Can Listening to Music Cause Headaches?

Listening to loud music with your headphones on might be bad for you, but you might suffer from other side effects of listening to loud music. Headaches might be one of them. Headaches, hyperactivity, and irritability might be symptoms of loud music.

Final Thoughts

Subwoofers can cause headaches but may not be a problem for everyone. It seems there are certain people more prone to this sensitivity than others.

There are ways to get around the headaches caused by subwoofers and your best bet is to first make sure you are using quality equipment as the substandard sound seems to be part of the problem. 

Other than that, try desensitizing to sound so you or those around you can adjust to the power of the bass.

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