Best Hearing Protection Buying Guide

Looking For Best Hearing Protection? We humans have senses to feel things happening around us. Out of these senses, the ability to hear plays an important role. Our ability to hear, makes our life a lot easier. We understand things purely on the basis of hearing. We communicate and learn things by hearing. What would happen if you’re not able to hear things properly? There are number of reasons one can loss his ability to hear. If your area of work requires to take precautions, then you should definitely buy ear plugs or muffs for hearing Protection. They can be of great help if you’re working where sound pollution limit exceeds normal. They are common tools for engineers, heavy metal workers, mechanical workshops and production units. These tools stop sound waves to get into your ear. They absorb the sound waves, and make the intensity low. Not only for workers, musicians can also use them, in a big concert, to focus on their own voice, rather than surroundings’. You can easily buy ear plugs and muffs. They’re readily available in tools shop or safety shops. You can buy them if you’re in a region which is prone to sound pollution.

Who Should Wear Hearing Protection?

Anyone can wear an ear protection, as long as you don’t want undesirable sound in your ears. Some of the common users are the workers working in industries, production engineers, mechanical workshops, welding shops, grinding shops. These work environments have compressors and heavy machinery working in them. So anyone working in them shall have hearing protection tools. They can also be used while sleeping, to ignore snoring. Some people use them while studying, to focus more on it. Musicians use them in case of high volume concerts. So anyone who has the need of suppressing sound waves can use them.

Choosing The Best Hearing Protection

With repetitive hearing of sound at high decibels which exceeds the normal limits, our ear drum becomes habitual of high-intensity sound. This could be a problem in day to day life, where the intensity of sound is low. In that case, that person will hear lesser sound than normal. So, it is mandatory for the workers to wear ear protection. It is really dangerous, because sudden impulse of sound waves can also damage ear drum. We should wear ear protection to save our ears from high-intensity sound waves.

Hearing Protection For Shooting

Most of guns and rifles release very high impulse sound waves when they’re used. They can damage your ear drums, and worst can happen into rupture. The repetitive sound of ammo firing can lead to serious hear loss. It is advisable to use ear muffs in the shooting range. If the intensity is high, you can also use ear plugs, and then over them, ear muffs. Together they give maximum protection against sound, and save your ear from hear loss. Shooting range gives your hearing protection before you enter the range, so use them before firing.

 Hearing Protection For Snoring

Some people are sensitive to sound, and they need peaceful environment to fell into sleep. If your house has someone who snores, then it could be nightmare for you. You can use ear plugs or ear muffs to restrict the sound, and have a peaceful sleep. Many people use these protection for safe and sound sleep. You don’t want to be awake in middle of night and then unable to sleep. You shouldn’t have hard core protection, because in night, anything could happen, and if you can’t listen, it could turn fatal.

Hearing Protection For  Swimming

Ear are very sensitive organs. Water can damage, and infect the inner ear drum. While swimming, water can enter ear, and it could turn into acute pain and suffering. You don’t want to spend money on medication. It is a saying that prevention is better than cure. You can use ear plugs to stop water entering your ears. They’re very tight and solid made, which can stop water to enter. Many people use them, because they’re safer and water contains many bacteria, which could lead to anything. It is advisable to use them while swimming

Hearing Protection For Musician

Musicians are prone to heavy sound waves, in concerts and live performances. Even in studios, due to regular work with sound and amplifiers, they’re very vulnerable to hear loss. If they use ear plugs and muffs during their performances, they can concentrate more on their voices than surroundings. Heavy speakers are installed on the stage, which can create impulses which could damage their ears. Many musicians use hearing protection when they’re live on stage, and it can protect them from hearing loss. Every musician should own plugs to be safe.

Hearing Protection For Motorcycle

While on the bike, you may hear loud exhaust noises, horns, and engine noises. They’re loud, and due to continuous noises, your eardrum may get used to it, and then ultimately lead to hearing loss. The chances of hearing loss due to motorcycles are very less, but there are still some. So when you ride your bike, you should wear earplugs along with a helmet, for maximized protection. Noise on road and your exhaust noises can lead to serious hearing loss if ignored. Very bike rider should own pair of ear plugs.

Hearing Protection For Industrial

They are the main area of usage for ear plugs and muffs. Industries have various operations and processes that include compressors, pumps, distillation columns, absorption chambers, agitation stations and mixers. These all have one thing in common, they produce hell lot of noise. So if you’re working around them, be sure you wear ear protection. These workers have the very sound polluted environment and working in the conditions like these can lead to permanent hear loss. There are lot of mechanical works that cause sounds, so every industrial worker should own pair of earplugs because they’re going to need it for sure.

 Hearing Protection For Airplane

A jet engine compresses air and makes low pressure over the plane’s wing. This process produces a lot of noise, which could be dangerous for the workers around a plane. Every mechanic should own these earplugs. Even for the people inside it, the sound of the engine is audible and quite irritating. You can us airplane plugs for restricting that sound. Many people carry them along their journey. They are very helpful when the plane is in the air, because of engine work at their full potential, making a hell lot of sound. It is advisable to use earplugs to lessen the noise and enjoy the window seat.

Hearing Protection For Studying

Some people have a hard time concentrating, and can lose focus just by some little sound. For people who love reading and studying in a peaceful environment. When they use earplugs for noise reduction, people tend to focus more than normal. Some people also carry their plugs along with them in coffee and reading shops. They are very useful while studying during exam time. If you want serious dedication towards studying and reading, then they’re just for a peaceful mind. Your focus will increase and can perform better.

Types Of Hearing Protection

Ear Plugs

Best Ear Plugs for Ear Protection

Ear Plugs are made of sponge, joined with a polyester thread sometimes, for easy accessibility. They’re readily available, and cheap. You can use them in almost every field of work that has sound exceeding limits. There are many kinds of plugs, sponge plugs are commonly used for industrial and mechanical environments. Swimming plugs are used for stopping the water to enter into the ear. Sleeping plugs for minimizing the sound in your room so that you can sleep peacefully. They have a vast area of usage than any other hearing protection. Due to their small size, they’re very convenient to carry around. You can also use them with other hearing protections, like first plugging in these plugs, and then using a muff over it. They come according to the noise level in your environment. Better earplugs will be heavier than normal ones. They’re comparatively cheap than any other protection. They can be used to enhance the ability of other hearing protection. Most of the engineers, workers, mechanics, welders, and grinders prefer these earplugs because they can’t hinder their work, and use can wear them in tight areas. They’re most convenient hearing protection, with a simple design and work fine. They’re a must-have item for heavy duty workers.

PROS:
  • Compact: They’re small, just enough to cover your ear and restricting sound waves to enter
  • Lightweight: Due to the small size, they’re very lightweight. You can carry them in your pockets, and plug into your ears when required.
  • Durable: Due to simple construction, they are very durable and last long. In a hot and humid environment, they work fine. A pair of earplugs can last till lifetime if you don’t lose them.
  • Industrial Use: They’re convenient for industrial use, around heavy machinery and work.
  • Easy To Carry: They’re very convenient to carry around, in a pouch or your pockets.

CONS:
  • For very high-intensity sounds, they might not be useful.
  • Require time to put and fit in
  • They are difficult to remove.
  • Can irritate the ear canal.
  • Easily get lost or misplaced somewhere due to small size.
  • They’re difficult to see and monitor the usage

Ear Muffs

Best Ear Muffs

They’re headphone shaped hearing protection, with heavy muffs installed in the earpiece. When you place them on the ear, they help in restricting and absorbing the sound waves around your ear. They are comparatively safer than earplugs. Their use is limited to heavy mechanical and industrial applications only. They’re designed well for the purpose and comes in different levels of efficiency. They can also be used for sleeping purposes, or where the sound is maximum in household works. They can easily be used with earplugs, to enhance the protection. You have to first install the earplugs into your ear. Plug them hard and make them fit. Now use a muff over it. They’re heavy and large in size, which can result in the hindrance of other safety equipment like vision protection and safety helmets. Most of the engineers, workers, mechanics, welders, and grinders prefer these ear muffs because they’re better at restricting sound than earplugs. They’re most safe hearing protection, but with a bigger size. They’re not that durable, because sometimes, the screen can come off from the earpiece, which can result in a faulty muff. They’re recommended for heavy sound environments, usually in industries, compressor, and pump rooms workers.

PROS:
  • Industrial Use: They’re convenient for industrial use, around heavy machinery and work. Most of the engineers and workers find these muffs better protection.
  • Easy To Use: They’re very easy to use, just place them over the head, so that earpiece covers your whole ear. They‘re easy to remove and install.
  • Usability: They can be used with earplugs to enhance maximum protection. Ear plugs are already good protections, but if you use muffs over them, you can walk into very heavy sound intensity environment.
  • Reliable: They’re solid made, and you can easily rely upon them.

CONS:
  • For very high-intensity sounds, they might not be useful.
  • Their screen can detach from the earpiece.
  • Hinder body movements and can’t work into tight places.
  • They’re less portable and heavy.
  • Not comfortable in a hot and humid climate.
  • Hinder safety helmets and safety glasses
  • Not very durable.

Zem Hearing Protector

Best Zem Hearing Protector

They’re innovative hearing protection, recently gained popularity. They’re different than ear plugs and muffs because both of them suppress the overall sound of the environment, but this protection system, let pass the voices and speech. So in an environment where coordination is needed, they’re better options than earplugs and muffs. They’re comparatively expensive, but when you realize their way of working, you would find it’s worth it. They hand around your neck when not in use. You can use them in any environment because they offer you maximum protection against sound pollution. Most of the engineers, workers, mechanics, welders, and grinders now prefer these protectors because they can’t hinder their work, and use can wear them in tight areas. They’re most convenient hearing protection, with elegant design and outstanding performance. If you’re a regular worker in these sound polluted areas, then it is suggested to invest in them, because they can let you hear the conversations. You can expect them to last longer because they’re very durable. They don’t hinder the use of other safety equipment like helmets and glasses, because they’re very thin and lightweight. You can freely move your body while wearing them. They’re suggested for heavy duty regular workers. It can be their daily hearing protection equipment.

PROS:
  • Compact: They’re small, just enough to cover your ear and restricting sound waves to enter
  • Lightweight: Due to the small size, they’re very lightweight. You can carry them around easily.
  • Voices: You can hear voices of conversations and speech.
  • Durable: Due to solid construction, they are very durable and last long. In a hot and humid environment, they work fine. They last for quite a long time.
  • Industrial Use: They’re convenient for industrial use, around heavy machinery and work.
  • Easy To Carry: They’re very convenient to carry around, in a pouch or your pockets after making them fold.

CONS:
  • Require time to put and fit in
  • They are difficult to remove.
  • Can irritate the ear canal.
  • Easily get lost or misplaced somewhere due to small size.
  • They’re difficult to see and monitor usage.
  • They’re a bit expensive

SYMPTOMS OF HEARING LOSS

The main indication of hearing loss is to have an urge to make every sound’s intensity high. You may get irritated when someone you’re talking to speaks to you because you hear sound low and muffled. Below are some of the primary symptoms of hearing loss

  • Muffling: You will hear the muffled sound of people talking to you. Watching TV and listening to music can turn into a disaster. Your eardrum will become heavy and everything you hear will get muffled.
  • Difficulty To Understand: some parts of speech will be difficult to understand. You may find yourself struggling in differentiating background and primary sounds. Speech recognition ability will suffer.
  • Trouble Hearing Consonants: Sounds of consonants is always enhanced in a speech. You will find it difficult to hear them. Because consonants require certain vibration in your eardrum. The inability to recognize that vibration by eardrum will cause it.
  • Asking Other To Speak Loudly: your eardrum will require to absorb high-intensity sound waves because it can’t vibrate properly in case of low ones. As a consequence, you will ask others to speak clearly and loudly. Some parts of speech you won’t get and need repeating.
  • Increasing Volume Of Television And Radio: You will find a difference in volume. Now you have to increase the volume level than normally you listen. You will turn up the volume of car stereo, music systems and everything that has sound.
  • Withdrawal From Conversations: Unable to properly recognize speech, you will find yourself unwilling to join conversations. You will get irritated with the muffling sounds, and ultimately leave the joining.
  • Avoidance Of Social Gatherings: This will happen due to your lack of communication, as a result of partial understanding of speech. You will find it struggling to keep intact the communication.

What Is Double Hearing Protection?

Double hearing protection is a combination of two hearing loss protectors used at one time. It is meant by using earplugs and muffs at the same time. You can first use earplugs, and insert them deep & fit. When they’re in the ear, use ear muff over them. This will enhance protection double times. Now you can walk into heavy machinery without any problem. This can reduce the chances of hearing a loss to a minimum as possible. Double protection is used by workers in the industrial environment, where the noise is very high.

When Do You Need Double Hearing Protection?

You can use double protection wherever you find the sound extraordinarily high. It is widely used in industries where there is heavy machinery. Mechanics use them when they’re grinding, welding and cutting. The environment where the noise is very high, like airports and other mechanical workshops. It is a good idea to use it whenever you feel like using it because there is no hard and fast rule. Double protection makes you unable to hear voices and speeches. So it is better to use in single duty work because you can lack coordination

Sound Frequency/Noise Level

The noise levels can go as high as 90 decibels and even more in certain mechanical, industrial processes. Heavy machinery has insulation for heat loss, but not for sound. Anything above 31 decibels is not safe for human ears. So it is better to use earplug and muffs when working under such circumstances. One needs to ascertain the level of sound frequency a particular job is expected to expose the humans to and accordingly arrange for the hearing protection. Normally the companies are required by law to provide for the hearing protection to its workforce, still, it’s better to be more aware of the hazards of working in such environments and proactively arrange for the protection

Different Hearing Protection For Different Age Groups

Adult protection can’t be used for children. Earplugs and muffs have different sizes for adults and children. You can’t use them for children. Because they fit loose on the children, and then the noise can’t be restricted. Plugs are going to be big for the ears of a child. It is better to buy them a new one according to their needs. Because if they suffer from hear loss at a very young age, they would suffer for their whole life. So buy separate hearing gears for children.

Disposable Hearing Protection 

Some plugs are for one-time use only. If you’re not prone to the high sound environment on a regular basis, and this is only a one-time thing, then you can use these disposable earplugs. They’re very cheap and comfortable. You can just plug them and feel free to walk in the area exceeding the limit. Disposable earmuffs are also available, which can be used only for a short duration of time. They’re comparatively good if you visit places occasionally. This disposable hearing protection is very important to have in every industry warehouse. These safety equipment are a must.

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Benefits of Using A Hearing Protection

Hearing protection has many benefits, but their main function is to save the ear from hearing loss. These earplugs and muffs have become a necessity in every work environment to save ear from damages. Let’s see some of the benefits of hearing protection.

Industrial Environment: They’re used by workers working in industries, production engineers, mechanical workshops, welding shops, grinding shops. These work environments have compressors and heavy machinery working in them. So they help in reducing the sound by restricting it. They have huge benefits over other methods like soundproofing, which can lead to extra expenditure.

By Musicians: Musicians are prone to heavy sound waves, in concerts and live performances. Even in studios, due to regular work with sound and amplifiers, they’re very vulnerable to hearing loss. If they use ear plugs and muffs during their performances. These plugs can be of great use for them to hear their own voice and focus. Also, they reduce sound waves to save them from hearing loss.

For Sleeping: They can help in sleeping. Some people are very sensitive to sound, and they can have a hard time sleeping… You can use ear plugs or ear muffs to restrict the sound and have a peaceful sleep. They are extensively used for peaceful and sound sleep throughout the world.

For Concentrating: You can concentrate on your work, reading and studying. When they use earplugs for noise reduction, people tend to focus more. They can put more efforts into the work and can get maximized results. You can use these plugs coffee and reading shops. They are very useful while studying during exam time. If you want serious dedication towards studying and reading, then they’re just for a peaceful mind. The art of focusing can increase many folds when you use plugs.

Other Benefits: You can use them while riding your bike, in household works where the sound’s more. In any work of life where the sound is exceeding the limit. They’re an economical way to reduce sound waves around you. If the sound is very high, and you’re not able to focus on work, and getting irritated, then you can use double protection. Double hearing protection is a combination of two hearing loss protectors used at one time. It is meant by using earplugs and muffs at the same time. You can first use earplugs, and insert them deep & fit. When they’re in the ear, use ear muff over them. While swimming, you can use them to restrict water to enter ears. You can save the expenditure of medication afterwords because water causes serious infection if entered and stayed in the ear. These are the benefits of hearing protection. They protect us from hearing loss and provide us better concentration.

Conclusion

They’re designed for giving us maximum protection against hearing loss. Whether you’re in an industry, mechanical workshop or in any condition with high sound, you can wear them and trust them. Whether you’re an engineer, mechanic, worker, welder or anyone, if your work has the high sound you should definitely have them. They save us from high sound and protects our eardrum. Nobody wants to lose this sense of the body. So they’re very good at what they do, and we should have their company with us to be saved and sound.

Reference Links:

Hearing Protector Device Compendium

Earmuff History – Invention of Earmuffs

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