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What are Some Types of Hearing Protection?

Article Details
  • Written By: Amy Hunter
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 13 May 2018
  • Copyright Protected:
    2003-2018
    Conjecture Corporation
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If you are exposed to an excessive amount of noise, hearing protection is important. The most common reason for hearing loss is exposure to loud noises. The noise can occur in a variety of ways. It seems obvious that attending music concerts is a recipe for eventual hearing loss, but many people are shocked to learn of the other ways that your hearing can be compromised.

If you work in a noisy, industrial setting, hearing loss can eventually occur. The noise does not need to be loud enough to cause pain; the repetitive nature is enough to cause eventual hearing loss. Many people are surprised to learn that a hair dryer may be loud enough to damage hearing. Although not nearly as loud as a jet airplane taking off, a hair dryer directs noise into the delicate ear.

The only way to reduce or eliminate hearing loss due to excessive noise is by wearing hearing protection. There are several types of hearing protection that you can wear. Ear plugs that fit inside the ear canal are very effective and comfortable. They are made of soft foam and mold to the shape of the inner ear area. By molding to the shape of the inner ear, foam ear plugs not only provide efficient noise blocking, they are also so comfortable you may even forget that you are wearing them.

Ear protection that fit over the outer ear is also a popular choice. These ear covering fit like ear muffs, but are made of noise reducing materials. People that have trouble wearing ear plugs that fit inside the ear often prefer this type of ear protection.

Whether you choose hearing protection that sits on the inside or the outside of the ear, it is important to choose a style that you will wear. The most effective ear protection available will not work if not worn consistently. If you are in an area where you will be exposed to loud or constant noise it is important to wear ear protection. Try several styles until you find a design that is comfortable.

Hearing loss is cumulative. Even if you are exposed to loud noises intermittently, it is important to protect your ears. Over the course of your lifetime, the cumulative effect of noise exposure can cause you to become one of the 75% of people that suffer from hearing loss by the time that they are 75 years old.

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