May is better hearing and speech month! We at UpState Hearing want to take the opportunity to encourage optimum hearing protection. It’s also a reminder that if you wear hearing aids, it’s as important as ever to continue to protect your hearing health.
Spring is such a beautiful and bittersweet time in the North state. For every chirping bird, there’s a pollen allergy. For every newly planted shrub, there’s the promise of another day with triple digit temperature. There’s little you can do to control the heat in your yard, but one thing you can avoid is permanent hearing damage due to excessive noise exposure. Tinnitus and hearing loss are common results of failing to protect our ears. Fortunately, it’s easy to avoid environmentally caused ear damage with very simple ear protection. So what are your options?
Ear Plugs – These come in a variety of disposable or reusable materials, often foam or silicone. Reusable versions are often attached with a thin cord. They can expand in the ear to create an effective noise barrier. They’re also inexpensive and easy to find at many retailers, including hardware stores or online markets. They can be purchased in bulk in order to stash a pair around all of your noisy appliances or around the garage and shop.
Ear Muffs – Standard over-the-ear muffs are very easy to throw on or off at a moment’s notice. For hearing aid users they can fit comfortably over the ears and devices. They come in a variety of styles for any price range. Noise cancelling headphones are ear muffs with speakers inside to provide the user the option of listening to whatever suits them, via bluetooth or a radio signal.
Custom Ear Plugs – If you operate heavy machinery or regularly expose yourself to firearms, custom ear plugs may be your best option. They will block out the loudest and most dangerous noise from your ears. A hearing aid dispenser can take impressions of your ears and have the plugs fabricated out of a durable material from one of our quality manufacturers. For maximum ear protection, use custom plugs in tandem with a quality pair of ear muffs.
Sometimes noise is so excessive that ear protection is obvious, such as with chainsaws and firearms. We encourage you to second guess whether or not some of your daily activities mandate the use of ear plugs, whether you’re blending a smoothie, mowing the lawn, or even enjoying a summer concert (just because the volume is that loud doesn’t mean it should be). There’s plenty of wonderful things to hear this season so be sure you can continue to do so for years to come. In honor of better hearing and speech month, stop by our Redding or Chico office during standard business hours and we’ll give you a pair free of charge. If you can’t make it to the office, call us and mention this article. We can arrange to have them shipped to you or one of our satellite offices.