What stops your hearing protection from working correctly? Here are 3 things to look out for.
Whether you’re at work or at home, sometimes you come across something that can interfere with the performance of your ear protection. That’s hard to deal with. You’re trying to do the right thing after all. When you go to a concert, you wear your earplugs; At work, you use earmuffs every day; and you try to steer clear of Uncle Joe who is always yelling in your ear.
Here’s the point, when you’re doing everything correctly but you’re still having trouble, it can be frustrating. Fortunately, you can take a few steps to protect yourself once you learn what types of things can interfere with the performance of your hearing protection. And this will keep your hearing protection in a state of efficiency even when you’re having a little difficulty.
1. Wearing The Wrong Type of Hearing Protection
There are two useful and standard categories of ear protection: earplugs and earmuffs. Earplugs are little and, as the name indicates, can be put right into the ear canal. Earmuffs look like a set of 70’s headphones, but instead of tunes, they provide protection for your hearing by muting external sound.
- When you’re in a setting where sound is fairly constant, earplugs are suggested.
- When loud sounds are more intermittent, earmuffs are recommended.
There’s a simple reason for that: when it’s quiet, you’ll want to remove you’re hearing protection which is more difficult to do with earplugs than earmuffs. Earplugs take a little more work to put in and are easy to lose track of so you could find yourself needing to replace lost plugs when you need them most.
Wear the right kind of hearing protection in the right scenario and you should be fine.
2. Your Anatomy Can Impact Your Ear Protection
There are many variables in human anatomy from one individual to another. That’s why your Uncle Joe has such a large set of vocal cords and your vocal cords are more normal sized. It’s also why your ear canal might be smaller than the average individual’s.
This can cause problems with your ear protection. Disposable hearing protection is frequently a one size fits all mindset, or at best, a small, medium, large situation. And so if you have rather tiny ear canals, you might have a difficult time getting those earplugs to fit, causing you to give up completely and throw the earplugs away in frustration.
If you find yourself in this situation, you may forsake the hearing protection you were trying to give yourself, leaving you at risk of hearing damage. Another example of this is people with large ears who often have a difficult time getting earmuffs to fit comfortably. If you spend a lot of time in noisy environments, it may be worth investing in custom ear protection tailored to your ears.
3. Assess if There’s Any Wear And Tear on Your Hearing Protection
You should be commended if you manage to use your hearing protection every day. But that also means you need to keep an eye on the wear and tear your ear protection is experiencing.
- When they lose their pliability, replace the cushions on your earmuffs.
- Examine the band on earmuff protection. When the elastic is worn out and the band is failing to hold the earmuffs snug, it’s time to switch out the band.
- Your hearing protection needs to be kept clean. Ears aren’t exactly the cleanest part of your body (ear wax serves a practical purpose and all, but it’s still kind of… yucky). Just make sure that you wash properly; if you’re cleaning an earmuff set, take the earmuffs apart. Be careful not to drop your earplugs down the drain.
If you want to get the greatest possible benefit, you need to perform routine maintenance on your hearing protection. It’s essential that you have a consultation with us if you have any questions on how to care for your hearing protection or want to know more about the things that can impede their performance.
You need your hearing. Taking the time to protect it properly is essential.