HWhat? Can you repeat that? Sadly, these are often the questions asked by someone with hearing loss who neglected to wear hearing protection when they should have. While utilizing hearing protection may not always be convenient, or the latest fashion statement, it IS a great way to keep healthy hearing.

What is hearing protection?

In
general, hearing protection can include any device that is worn on or in the
ears in an effort to prevent noise-induced hearing
loss
.
Sometimes it is worn during loud recreational activities, such as hunting or
shooting sports. Other times, hearing protection is worn in the workplace to
counteract occupational hazards – picture a noisy factory or someone who uses
loud equipment as part of their job.

When is it necessary to wear hearing
protection?

According
to the National Institutes of
Health (NIH)
,
the extent to which hearing damage occurs depends on these three primary
factors:

  1. Proximity
    to the source of the sound
  2. How
    loud the sound is
  3. How
    long you are exposed to the sound

Paying
attention to these three conditions will help you know when to wear hearing
protection – if you are close to sounds of 85 dB or greater for repeated or
extended periods of time, it is recommended that you protect your ears. After
all, why risk getting hearing loss when it can be
prevented?

What types of hearing protection are available?

There are
several devices which can be used for hearing protection, and they vary in
cost, style, functionality, and availability:

  1. Expandable foam earplugs – Readily available at local stores and perfect for everyday use for exposure to moderate noise levels.
  2. Custom molded, reusable earplugs – These offer a greater degree of protection than the one-size-fits-all models since they are custom fit to your ears.
  3. Canal caps – These are easily inserted and removed from the ears, making them convenient for someone who is exposed to loud noises in short intervals.
  4. Earmuffs – These vary in style and complexity but generally provide more hearing protection than earplugs or canal caps.

Where can you get hearing protection?

Many types of hearing protection are readily available in local stores. For example, earplugs can often be found at the local drug store, and ear muffs are commonly sold in establishments that sell noisy equipment such as chainsaws. More specialized devices, such as the kind of ear muffs used by hunters, can be purchased at sporting goods stores or ordered online.

If you
have specific hearing protection needs related to your particular occupation or
environment, however, you may find it helpful to schedule an appointment with one of our
audiologists. There may be custom-fit options that will better meet your needs
than the types of hearing protection that are more of a one-size-fits-all
approach. Give us a call today and we’ll be happy to help you protect your
hearing for tomorrow!

Learn More about Advanced Hearing Group

The post How Hearing Protection Makes for Healthy Hearing appeared first on Hear Well – Live Well.

Source: Hear Well-Live Well Blog

How Hearing Protection Makes for Healthy Hearing was last modified: June 21st, 2019 by joey