Hearing Protection Devices
Hearing Protection Devices (HPDs) should be used by musicians, hunters, employees who work in noise, and the general public when in a noisy environment (Ex: mowing the lawn, using power tools, watching fireworks, etc).
Damage to ears from noise usually occurs over time. The more time you have been exposed to loud noise, the higher the chance of damage to your hearing. Genetics can also play a role in how susceptible you are to having hearing loss following exposure to noise. Come in for a hearing test to get a baseline so you’ll know if there’s been a change!
As the noise level you are exposed to increases, the amount of time you should be in that environment decreases.
Permissible amount of noise exposure according to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)
|#of hours/per day allowed||Sound level (dB)||Examples of common sounds at these volumes|
|4||95||Inside a subway or electric drill|
|2||100||Riding a motorcycle or school dance|
|½||110||Rock band or Jackhammer|
|.25||115||Emergency vehicle siren|
Types of Hearing Protection Devices (HPDs)
There are 2 styles of HPDs: Ear plugs and ear muffs. Individually, these HPDs reduce noise, but both can be worn at the same time for additional noise reduction. Custom style HPDs require an impression of the ear so that it will fit an individual’s ear perfectly. These custom ear plugs come in a variety of colors with different levels of noise reduction (up to 25dB of noise reduction).
- Often times, universal HPDs distort the sound quality of music which makes it difficult to wear during performances and practices. However, many new HPDs have specialized filters to offer protection from loud noise while maintaining the fidelity of the music. Call today to schedule an appointment with one of our audiologists to learn more!
- Digital HPDs are a great option for hunters who want to be able to hear environmental sounds but also need fast protection from the loud gunshot. Exposure to the sound of just ONE gunshot can permanently damage hearing.
- The digital HPDs require batteries in order to amplify environmental sounds and also quickly compress the sound of the firearm.
- Custom and behind the ear style are both available with digital HPDs.