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Tag Archives: Hearing Protection

  • Clubbing earplugs

    Coming out of a night club at 6.00am in the morning with a groggy head and ringing ears is many people’s worst nightmare, but for ardent clubbers, this is a weekly labour of love. Some of London’s nightclubs will continue well into breakfast time, smashing out hits while the rest of the world sits down to their muesli. And then there’s Ibiza; the World’s number one club land location which won’t stop for sleep all summer.

    Such a hedonistic lifestyle is every medical practitioner’s nightmare: although young clubbers may brush off the potential for damage, the risk of developing hearing problems from clubbing is very real.

    The average night club sound range is anywhere from 100db, deemed a safe level of noise for up to two hours, to 115db, considered safe for only up to 15 minutes. The longer the time exposure, the higher the risk of causing hearing damage.

    Low-level damage will frequently go unnoticed, appearing cumulatively as your club career progresses or compounded by natural hearing deterioration from old age. If your ears are still ringing more than two days after a hard night out, you have most probably damaged your hearing permanently.

    Frequent clubbers may experience hearing problems such as tinnitus if they continue to listen to loud music without adequate protection:

    "Intense sound can cause changes to the hearing system and can then lead to tinnitus. Loud music is fun but we must be careful too," said David Baguley, consultant clinical scientist at Cambridge University Hospitals and vice chairman of the British Tinnitus Association.

    With the risk of damaging your hearing high, it is a very good idea to take precautions. The longer and closer you stand to speaker systems, the greater the risk; we recommend that you take regular breaks from the dance floor and stand far enough away to avoid damage.

    If you are a regular clubber, spending several nights a week in loud nightclub environments, it is also a very good idea to invest in some earplugs. The guide below will help you identify the best solution:

    ProGuard Noizezz earplugs provide a high-quality solution as each pack contains 4 sizes for the perfect fit in both ears. These combine comfort, a low profile with a 24 dB noise reduction, and are fully re-usable.

    Alpine PartyPlug earplugs are a very good value solution designed specifically for clubbing, concert and festival-going. Fully re-usable and washable in warm soapy water, these will survive the heaviest of nights out, providing an average noise reduction rating of 26dB.

    Mack's High Fidelity Hear Plugs are ideal for all music lovers, allowing you to hear music clearly while safely reducing volume levels. They are comfortable to wear and are the ideal protection for festivals, concerts and gigs.

    Mack's Safe Sound Ultra earplugs provide an excellent value, semi-disposable format, with seven pairs in each box. If you are afraid of losing your earplugs on a night out, this value-for-money solution means they are easily replaceable; they also have a reduction rating of 29dB.

  • Hearing screening for newborns

    It has been reported that one to two babies in every 1000 are born with a hearing loss in one or both ears and that is why the NHS has set up the Newborn Hearing Screening Programme. This programme aims to identify any hearing impairment in the early stages of development to help give children a better chance of developing speech and language skills.

    In recent reports a baby girl was born profoundly deaf, but has since benefitted from the NHS programme. To help identify the seriousness of baby Bride’s condition, medics ran a series of tests, launched by Hull and East Yorkshire Hospitals NHT Trust seven years ago. Baby Bride was then fitted with two cochlear implants, which has improved her hearing outstandingly.   However in January this year Miss Bride lost her hearing again due to unknown circumstance, but has yet been fitted with new implants.

    Another way medics have been treating children with hearing impairment is the use of ear tubes, which recently have concerned doctors using them with children with cochlear implants due to increased complications.  However, after recent studies it is now considered safe for children to wear ear tubes with cochlear implants.

    Hearing loss in babies has become more concerning for parents and now under the Newborn Hearing Screening Programme all parents are offered the chance to have their child’s hearing tested within the first few weeks.

  • How Earplugs Improve Your Quality of Life

    Are earplugs really that important? How can something so small, inexpensive earplugs make such a big impact on a person’s life as to improve the quality? We worry about many areas of health, yet tend to neglect our hearing health. The fact is, hearing loss is very prevalent and common in aging as well as in younger adults who are exposed to loud music via music venues, iPods and handheld gaming devices.

    Think about it this way, most factory workers exposed to noise on a regular basis protect their hearing through the use of work earplugs, but you might be exposed to similar noises in the course of a day and never protect your hearing. Turn up an iPod to full blast (as many teens do) and you have the equivalent of listening to heavy machinery. Many common noises are just as dangerous as industrial noises: mowing the lawn, listening to a concert, music in a club, children’s toys. Continue reading

  • Holiday Gift Ideas for Pampering and Hearing Protection

    The silly season is right around the corner. Have you started your shopping or perhaps you enjoy the thrill of shopping on Christmas Eve and scooping up on the big sales. I can’t believe there was a time in my life where I waited until Christmas Eve to shop for everyone on my list. In one evening, I’d have all the shopping done in 3 hours and then spend the next few hours with a bottle of wine and rolls of wrapping paper.

    Not anymore! With children, you have to plan quite some time in advance, and my days of a relaxing Christmas Eve shopping and wrapping presents are long done. The one salvation of Christmas shopping these days when you have children is the internet! No more paying a sitter so you can shop or asking your spouse to “baby sit” and then hear all the grumbling when you arrive home. Don’t you just love hearing those disparaging remarks after you’ve just spent 5 hours searching every store for the most popular toy of the season? “Why did it take you so long? Did you make the toys yourself?” Ugh! Continue reading

  • Inner and Outer Noises

    I recently read some interesting stuff on sound. We tend to think about sound in terms of music, voices, sounds in nature and so forth. Sound is very important. It’s how we communicate and it can be a great form of entertainment. At the same time, it can be annoying or even menacing if it disturbs our sleep.

    Protecting your hearing with noise-reducing ear plugs or musician’s ear plugs can ensure a lifetime of hearing sweet sounds. You can also use earplugs such as sleeping ear plugs to block the types of sound that cause distress. But what about the sound you hear in your own head? Do you need to protect yourself from sounds that have nothing to do with your ears? Continue reading

  • Start Christmas Shopping Now for the Music Lovers

    Yet another article on the damaging effects of consistent exposure to loud music via earphones or concerts made me think about this year’s Christmas list. Do you have music lovers on your list? If you do, you should read this article and truly consider purchasing some hearing protection for them!

    Hearing damage can occur after exposure to decibel levels as low as 85 dB. Hearing damage is permanent and irreversible. Tiny hair cells in the inner ear convert sound energy into electrical signals. These signals travel to the brain where the sound is interpreted. Hearing damage occurs when the hair cells are damaged, and the worst part is, they don’t grow back. This is why hearing damage is permanent and irreversible. The only way to improve hearing after hearing damage occurs it to wear hearing aids. Continue reading

  • How Will Hearing Loss Affect Your Relationships?

    I mentioned this a few blogs ago: Earplugs now or hearing aids later! I’ll add to that: Ear plugs now or divorce later? Studies show that marriages are negatively affected by hearing loss. Though there may be times you wish you couldn'’t hear your spouse, consider how important communication truly is in a marriage.

    Many marital problems have everything to do with a lack of communication between spouses. Feelings of resentment might build when emotions are held back. Frustration may build when one spouse feels the other is ignoring requests. So, when communication is thwarted with an actual physical inability to hear the other person, you can imagine how much this augments the situation. Continue reading

  • How Can Golfing Damage Your Hearing?

    Crikey! Golfing can damage hearing? How can that be when golfing is a sport known for “sideline” whispers and dainty golf claps to avoid distracting the golfers? Well, apparently, the risk lies with the new-fangled titanium golf clubs.

    The noise the titanium clubs make when they whack the ball down the course (and hopefully not in the grove of trees to the right… slice!), has been said to create a sonic boom. While this may be an exaggeration, the fact remains that the noise could cause damage over repeated exposure. One 55-year-old claims his hearing has been partially damaged after using the titanium clubs 3 times a week over the last 18 months. Continue reading

  • Hearing Protection for Tweens?

    Tweens are kids who are in between childhood and "teenhood" ages 8-12. My daughter falls in this category (almost 11). It's a difficult age as they transition from playing with toys to thinking about boys. And the boys are very much over the "girl's are icky" stage as well. It's at this time when we start worrying about the big talks as well as other soon-to-be issues such as avoiding drug use, alcohol etc. We still want them to wear their bike helmets, even though they are more concerned about how the helmet will mess up their hair. Do we really have the time to worry about yet another issue such as hearing loss?

    Well, we'd better because with all the noise in their world, many of our tweens could end up with irreversible noise-related hearing loss. They have iPods and other portable music devices, handheld video games and gaming consoles hooked up to surround sound. They will soon be attending more gymnasiums to watch sporting events that can reach very high decibel levels. Rock concerts may be a bit in the future, but with more and more musicians targeting this age group, you may be closer to a Miley Cyrus concert than you think! Continue reading

  • Humorous Take on Serious Quiz

    After reading through questions on a hearing loss quiz from an article in U.S. News, my strange sense of humour kicked in and I had to comment on some of the questions. Yes, hearing loss is a serious subject and I highly advocate (as you know) the use of hearing protection. However, in a world so full of serious stuff, let's take a break and have a bit of a laugh! Well, I hope you do, anyway!

    If you take the hearing loss quiz and answer yes to more than three questions, you may have some amount of hearing loss. I was thinking, though, that many of the questions could have another reason or answer. Here's my take. Continue reading

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