What hinders your hearing protection from working properly? Here are 3 things to watch for.
Despite your best efforts, you can sometimes run into things that can hinder your hearing protection, both at home and at the job. That’s difficult to cope with. You’re attempting to do the right thing after all. When you go to a concert, you wear your earplugs; At work, you wear earmuffs every day; and you do your best to steer clear of Uncle Joe who is always shouting 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 some measures to protect yourself once you learn what kinds 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 convenient and basic categories of ear protection: earplugs and earmuffs. As the names might indicate, earplugs are compact and can be inserted directly into the ear canal. Earmuffs look like a set of 70’s headphones, but instead of music, they provide protection for your hearing by blocking outside sound.
- When you’re in a situation where noise is relatively constant, earplugs are suggested.
- When loud sounds are more sporadic, earmuffs are suggested.
The reasons for that are pretty simple: you’ll want to remove your hearing protection when it isn’t noisy, and that’s easier to do with earmuffs than earplugs. Earplugs are very easy to misplace (especially if they’re cheap and disposable anyway), so you don’t want to be in a scenario where you remove an earplug, lose it, and then need it later.
You will be okay if you wear the correct protection in the right situation.
2. Your Hearing Protection Can be Affected by Your Anatomy
There are many variables in human anatomy from person to person. That’s why your vocal cords are average sized compared to old Uncle Joe’s larger vocal cords. It’s also why your ear canal may be smaller than the average individual’s.
And that can hinder your ear protection. Disposable hearing protection is frequently a one size fits all mentality, or at best, a small, medium, large scenario. And so if you have rather tiny ear canals, you might have a tough time getting those earplugs to fit, causing you to give up completely and in frustration, throw them away..
This can leave you exposed to risk, undermining the hearing protection you were trying to provide for yourself. Another example of this is people with large ears who frequently have a tough time getting earmuffs to fit comfortably. If you’re in a noisy setting regularly, it might be worth investing in custom hearing protection tailored to your ears.
3. Assess Your Hearing Protection For Wear And Tear
If you’re using your hearing protection daily, you should give yourself a pat on the back. But that also means you need to monitor the wear and tear your hearing protection is experiencing.
- If you use earmuffs, check the band. The band will need to be replaced if the elastic is worn out and no longer holds the earmuffs tight.
- When they lose their pliability, replace the cushions on your earmuffs.
- Wash your hearing protection. Earwax serves a practical function in your body but it can also accumulate on your hearing protection. Just make certain that you wash properly; if you’re cleaning a set of earmuffs, take apart the earmuffs. If you’re rinsing earplugs, don’t drop them down the drain.
Making sure you carry out regular maintenance on your hearing protection is vital if you want to continue benefiting from that protection. It’s important that you have a consultation with us if you have any questions on how to care for your hearing protection or want to learn more about the things that can impede their performance.
Your hearing is vital. Taking the time to protect it properly is essential.