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Deductive development and validation of a measure to assess sensitivity to infra- low and ultra- high frequency sound

Deductive development and validation of a measure to assess sensitivity to infra- low and ultra- high frequency sound
Deductive development and validation of a measure to assess sensitivity to infra- low and ultra- high frequency sound
Auditory research as well as complaints about environmental noise indicate that there might exist a small but significant percentage of individuals within the population who are sensitive towards infra- and low-frequency or ultra- and high-frequency sounds (ILF/ UHF). This paper reports on the development, factorization and construct validation of a questionnaire to measure frequency sensitivity at frequencies outside the common hearing range. Principal component and exploratory factor analyses, based on a sample of N = 267 Europeans, mainly from the UK, Slovenia, and Germany, suggested that ILF vs. UHF sensitivity constitute different factors that include sensory perception, stress responsivity, and behavioral avoidance of these extreme frequencies. A third factor emerged, comprising beliefs of dangerousness associated with ILF and/or UHF. The factors explained 72% of the total variance. The factor-solution was robust and replicated separately for the English (n = 98) and the German (n = 169) versions of the questionnaire (Slovenians filled out the English version as did participants from the UK). The resulting scales had acceptable to excellent reliability. ILF and UHF sensitivity were only moderately related to established measures of noise sensitivity in the normal hearing range, suggesting that our scales likely capture a sufficiently distinct type of sensitivity. Correlations with psychiatric and somatic symptoms were small to moderate. Only ILF sensitivity correlated with neuroticism and daytime sleepiness (moderate effect), while both ILF and UHF sensitivity were significantly related to agreeableness (comprising all small effects). In sum, we conclude that our ILF and UHF sensitivity scales provide a solid starting point for conducting further research on the prediction of inter-individually divergent effects (e.g. health outcomes, annoyance ratings) of ILF and UHF sound, as moderated by sensitivity. The questionnaire consortium recommends using the new scales in combination with established measures of sensitivity in the normal hearing range.
1463-1741
173-182
Ascone, Leonie
2dd777c0-eced-49d7-ad95-c18380821c3c
Uppenkamp, Stefan
75b0bb54-f8fc-427a-b63b-978f19bfd8c5
Behler, Oliver
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Lineton, Ben
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Burke, Elisa
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Koch, Christian
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Kühn, Simone
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Geršak, Gregor
b7f3301b-60f1-4713-8088-bc711e94b88f
Ascone, Leonie
2dd777c0-eced-49d7-ad95-c18380821c3c
Uppenkamp, Stefan
75b0bb54-f8fc-427a-b63b-978f19bfd8c5
Behler, Oliver
9742147d-9e0a-4a1e-9894-cf4ddc54be3c
Lineton, Ben
1ace4e96-34da-4fc4-bc17-a1d82b2ba0e2
Burke, Elisa
4b3c962c-cecb-4522-a60b-c9b2b9022555
Koch, Christian
3eb9eaca-c280-43b9-8773-5dd63731945e
Kühn, Simone
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Geršak, Gregor
b7f3301b-60f1-4713-8088-bc711e94b88f

Ascone, Leonie, Uppenkamp, Stefan, Behler, Oliver, Lineton, Ben, Burke, Elisa, Koch, Christian, Kühn, Simone and Geršak, Gregor (2020) Deductive development and validation of a measure to assess sensitivity to infra- low and ultra- high frequency sound. Noise and Health, 21 (101), 173-182.

Record type: Article

Abstract

Auditory research as well as complaints about environmental noise indicate that there might exist a small but significant percentage of individuals within the population who are sensitive towards infra- and low-frequency or ultra- and high-frequency sounds (ILF/ UHF). This paper reports on the development, factorization and construct validation of a questionnaire to measure frequency sensitivity at frequencies outside the common hearing range. Principal component and exploratory factor analyses, based on a sample of N = 267 Europeans, mainly from the UK, Slovenia, and Germany, suggested that ILF vs. UHF sensitivity constitute different factors that include sensory perception, stress responsivity, and behavioral avoidance of these extreme frequencies. A third factor emerged, comprising beliefs of dangerousness associated with ILF and/or UHF. The factors explained 72% of the total variance. The factor-solution was robust and replicated separately for the English (n = 98) and the German (n = 169) versions of the questionnaire (Slovenians filled out the English version as did participants from the UK). The resulting scales had acceptable to excellent reliability. ILF and UHF sensitivity were only moderately related to established measures of noise sensitivity in the normal hearing range, suggesting that our scales likely capture a sufficiently distinct type of sensitivity. Correlations with psychiatric and somatic symptoms were small to moderate. Only ILF sensitivity correlated with neuroticism and daytime sleepiness (moderate effect), while both ILF and UHF sensitivity were significantly related to agreeableness (comprising all small effects). In sum, we conclude that our ILF and UHF sensitivity scales provide a solid starting point for conducting further research on the prediction of inter-individually divergent effects (e.g. health outcomes, annoyance ratings) of ILF and UHF sound, as moderated by sensitivity. The questionnaire consortium recommends using the new scales in combination with established measures of sensitivity in the normal hearing range.

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NAH_46_19R5 - Accepted Manuscript
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Accepted/In Press date: 23 January 2020
Published date: 25 July 2020

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 438562
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/438562
ISSN: 1463-1741
PURE UUID: 0c4496ea-753e-4000-94f5-110796d5dfe5

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Date deposited: 17 Mar 2020 17:30
Last modified: 12 Dec 2021 08:18

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Contributors

Author: Leonie Ascone
Author: Stefan Uppenkamp
Author: Oliver Behler
Author: Ben Lineton
Author: Elisa Burke
Author: Christian Koch
Author: Simone Kühn
Author: Gregor Geršak

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