Evanston Audiology - Evanston, IL

Man trimming bushes with electric trimmer while wearing hearing protection.

Summer has finally arrived!

That means it’s time to go out and enjoy all the fun activities that the season has to provide. But before you go to the beach, the concert, or the backyard cookout, don’t forget to protect your hearing.

Loud noises can harm your hearing, even if you don’t feel like they’re very loud. So it’s important to take steps to protect your ears, especially during the summer months when you’re more likely to experience loud noises.

One of the most important steps is utilizing earplugs, especially under certain conditions.

Going for a swim

Bacteria and parasites love water and can even live in fairly clean pools potentially resulting in swimmer’s ear. Earplugs will help keep water out of your ears and prevent infection.

Polluted water getting into your ears, while normally not a serious issue, can have some negative repercussions. Temporary hearing loss, pain, and swelling can be the consequence.

Left untreated, infections can lead to damage to the eardrum and the delicate inner workings of the ear.

It’s impossible to completely stay away from all pathogens in hot tubs or pools, but using swimming earplugs will help protect your ears.

Live performances and concerts

Attending a concert is always fun, particularly in the summer months. Because the performers are attempting to reach such a large audience, however, noise levels are often off the charts.

Depending on the spot that you’re standing at the venue, you could be exposed to as many as 120 decibels (dB). These volume levels can immediately cause hearing loss that can be permanent.

Earplugs are fashioned to decrease sound, not distort it. Earplugs have an NRR rating with a range of 20 to 33, which identifies the strength of the protection. An NRR of 20 will lower the sound by 20 dB. So a 120-dB concert will be reduced to around 100 dB.

However, that’s still a potentially damaging level.

The closer you are to a speaker, the higher NRR you’ll require to safeguard your ears and prevent permanent hearing damage. Within 15 minutes, you can experience irreversible hearing damage even if you make use of the highest level of protection. For the highest level of protection, stand a distance from the speakers and use earplugs.

The same applies to indoor concerts, sporting events, plays, movies, barbecues, celebrations, or other events where sounds are being boosted through speakers.

property maintenance

You do it every week, but the grass keeps growing. You regularly edge the flowerbeds and weed the steps to keep your yard from looking like a mess. Then you keep the long grass under control with a weed-whacker.

Your hearing will certainly be compromised by the volume level of yard equipment. The noise from this equipment can be reduced and your ears can be safeguarded by wearing earplugs.

If you aren’t using earplugs when you use the mower, over time, you will be observably causing hearing loss.

Independence Day

They’re an essential part of Independence Day. When July arrives, it’s time to celebrate the birth of our country. But fireworks have a dark side. They can generate up to 175dB of noise. If you shot a gun right near your head it would be around this volume.

You’ll absolutely want earplugs if you’re going to a large fireworks show. If you’re close to the action, the highest NRR rating is suggested. You’ll still be able to hear the fireworks and they’ll still be loud, but you’ll be safeguarding your ears from future hearing loss.

It’s important to safeguard your hearing

Don’t wait until your hearing loss is extreme to seek help. Most people probably won’t even recognize that their hearing is slowly going until it’s too late, and unfortunately, it’s irreversible. Give us a call right away so we can help you identify any risks you may have.

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The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.
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