The most common preventable cause of hearing loss in our society is exposure to noise. Harmful noise is found just about everywhere in our mechanized world: loud music, planes, trains, automobiles, concerts, sporting events, racetracks, personal listening devices, shooting firearms, and noisy workplaces. Hearing loss is seldom sudden. Instead, it is a gradual, insidious change that is largely unnoticed until a significant permanent loss has occurred. Unfortunately, this type of damage to the nerves of hearing is typically irreversible and difficult to compensate for with amplification devices. Unlike minor vision loss, which is corrected via magnification, hearing loss affects the ability to understand human speech. It is possible to make it louder, however, it is nearly impossible to make it more clear.
With vision, you can be temporarily blinded by an intense light blast, like looking directly into the sun. It is an immediate sensory loss of vision resulting in blurry images and often pain. Although vision appears to recover in time (just like hearing does after exposure), some lingering permanent damage may have occurred. Would you intentionally expose yourself to that?
Here is a chart of common decibel levels of activities we all do, sometimes daily. In looking through this chart, I find most activities above 100 dB, are planned activities. There are always surprises and emergency noise exposures in our life we cannot control. But when we can plan them, protecting ourselves is imperative to our future hearing health.
If you have questions on what protection is right for your favorite hobbies & activities, give WildEar a shout at Support@WildEar.com. We can help you get the right protection!