Those who are often exposed to loud levels of sounds, like musicians or gun enthusiasts, are more likely to have hearing loss, tinnitus, or other hearing impairments than the average person. Exposure to sounds above 85 decibels (dB), both of which often exceed these levels, can cause permanent noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL) – and there’s no getting it back. It is essential to properly protect your ears when you are around noise.
Music Ear Plug and Monitors
Musicians need to protect their hearing, but also need to hear the music clearly. Conventional noise protection or store-bought earplugs unevenly dampen sound, unnaturally distorting the music. Whether a hobbyist, professional musician, or frequency concert goer, you need high fidelity ear plugs which evenly attenuate across all frequencies.
Music earplugs come in both custom and non-custom options. Over-the-counter high-fidelity earplugs can reduce sound levels by approximately 15 dB, which is enough to reduce loud, damaging levels of music to a safer volume level. Custom-made music ear plugs fit more deeply into the ear canal, providing a higher level of protection and better maintain the quality of the music.
Hearing Protection for Shooting
There are many options for hearing protection when shooting. However, some options are better than others depending on where and what you are doing.
- For hunters: Electronic shooter earplugs are ideal as the digital sound technology compresses noise about a harmful decibel level and chances the soft, quieter sounds – protecting your ears when need it while not blocking any natural sound.
- For gun enthusiasts: Custom ear plugs, muffs, or reusable shooter ear plugs (like foam or moldable wax) offer excellent noise protection. However, it is important to be aware of the Noise-Reduction Rating (NRR). Especially if you are in an indoor range because sound continues to reverberate inside the building, amplifying the noise level. In these situations, some form of custom or reusable plug in addition to earmuffs is recommended to appropriately protect your ears.
Custom hearing protection should be considered if you are a:
- Musician and music teacher
- Sound crew
- Recording engineer
- Athletic coach
- NFL football player
- Dentist or dental hygienist
- Construction worker
- Industrial or factory worker
- Truck driver