We live in a world filled with noise. People, vehicles, machinery, the weather – there’s plenty of noise wherever we go that we can’t always control the volume of. Then there are those times where we put ourselves in the path of noise with construction and concerts, festivals and personal audio players. The problem with noise is that too much can damage our hearing, and sometimes, this damage is irreversible.

Damage induced by noise can be permanent and incurable, and if you don’t reduce your exposure to noise, you are going to put yourself at risk. The best option for doing this if you can’t avoid being in the presence of too much noise is to wear the right hearing protection. The problem? Hearing protection comes in so many styles and colors, materials and sizes. Hearing protection has to be tailored to you and your needs, and when you choose the wrong hearing protection, you’re going to notice straight away.

With all of this in mind, you need to speak to an audiologist to know whether you have a substantial hearing loss. They will be able to test your hearing and tell you whether you are going to need hearing protection going forward and which type of hearing protection will be right for you. Let’s take a look at the three top tips for choosing the proper hearing protection for you.

Know what you need

Before you can choose any kind of hearing protection, your appointment with your audiologist has to happen. They can then talk you through the extent of your hearing loss and let you know how much noise reduction you need. You need to understand that the hearing protection that you choose will block enough noise so that you are going to be protected at all times. The good news is that there are plenty of hearing protection options out there that will cover you for what you need.

The louder environments need you to have high levels of noise reduction, but you don’t want to reduce your sound so much that you cannot hear anything at all. Talk to an audiologist about which ear protection options are the best for your specific needs, whether it is a hobby like hunting or a job in construction.

Think about your lifestyle

There are plenty of careers that expose you to high amounts of noise, particularly if you are working in a trade. In most workplaces that require hearing protection, you will also need eye and head protection. So, headphones over the top of your head to block the noise wouldn’t work as there is nowhere for the rest of the protection to go. Earplugs would be better here so that you can continue to wear protection elsewhere.

You should also consider whether your lifestyle needs ear protection continuously, or you would need it intermittently during the day. If your hands get dirty in the day, you may not want to use earplugs so that you don’t invite infections in your ears. You should also consider how much you need to hear your boss talking to you in the day.

Think about your comfort

When you have narrowed down your hearing protection selection, you can then try and test them all to know what works. It only works if you are consistent to ensure that you’re not exposed to a lot of noise all the time. Many people decide headphones are more comfortable than earplugs, but earplugs are convenient to carry and lightweight. If your ear canals are narrow or oddly shaped, headphones could be the better option for you.

Your hearing health relies on knowing how to look after your hearing in the first place, and that involves choosing the right hearing protection for your own needs. You should use the proper protection for your work and personal tasks, and then wear it, even more, when you are exposed to noise that makes you flinch. The best thing that you can do is to book an appointment with an audiologist who can talk you through your hearing loss and give you the best possible advice on hearing protection options. Take time to choose the right audiologist, and you’ll feel great soon with hearing that works!

Learn more about Hearing & Balance Centers of West Tennessee by calling either of these phone numbers: Jackson: (731) 256-5973 or Memphis: (901) 201-6761.