Last updated: Mar 09, 2011
bass-what-the-yuck
Juliette Borda
Q: When I go to a really loud concert or movie, sometimes I can feel the bass vibrating in my chest. Is that bad for my heart?


A: Sound waves in the air cause things to vibrate—walls, chairs, glasses of water. The bones in your ear translate those vibrations into nerve signals, which your brain interprets as sounds. But other body parts can vibrate, too, including your chest. For most of us, this is nothing to worry about. Unless you have a serious heart condition, the pounding bass shouldnt affect your heart muscle. But if you feel chest vibrations when you arent around loud sounds, this could be a sign of an abnormal heart rhythm—see your doc to get it checked out. (And dont forget: Repeated exposure to very loud noises can cause hearing loss.)