Earmolds serve numerous functions. However, one common use involves hearing protection.
Studies show that approximately 36 million American adults have hearing loss affecting one or both ears. And for many people, it occurs gradually and without pain, often from continuous exposure to loud noises.
Noise-induced hearing loss can occur because of a single incident or because of frequent exposure to noise over time. These situations can damage the tiny hair cells found inside your inner ear. When that occurs, it makes it difficult to hear sound clearly.
While you can’t prevent all forms of hearing loss, you can reduce your chances of noise-induced hearing loss. Kevin Sharim and our Sharp Hearing Care Professionals team offer a wide range of custom-fitted earmolds, ensuring that you have the protection you need to safeguard your hearing in every situation.
Here’s how to recognize your risk of noise-induced hearing loss and how earmolds can help.
What noise causes hearing loss
It’s easy to assume that sounds need to be incredibly loud in order to cause hearing damage — like explosions. However, any sounds that reach 85 decibels or higher can cause irreversible damage to the hair cells within your inner ear.
For perspective, here are a few examples of damaging noise levels and the sounds associated with them:
- 85-100 decibels: kitchen blender, subway train, lawn mower, or forklift
- 100-120 decibels: motorcycle, impact wrench, bulldozer
- 120-140 decibels: auto racing, rock concerts, pounding a nail with a hammer
- 125-155 decibels: fireworks, firecrackers, or jet engines
- 170-190 decibels: gunshots or rockets
When exposed to these sounds, you’re at risk of hearing damage. And it increases the closer you get to the sound and the longer you’re exposed. Because of this, it’s crucial to protect your hearing whenever you engage in noisy activities.
Recognizing the risks for noise-induced hearing loss
Generally speaking, anyone is at risk of noise-induced hearing loss. However, several factors can increase your chances of this problem, such as:
- Listening to devices at high volumes
- Attending loud performances
- Working in noisy areas, such as construction sites or transit stations
- Using lawn equipment, such as leaf blowers, mowers, and chainsaws
- Engaging in certain hobbies, such as auto racing, shooting, or hunting
People in certain professions are also at significant risk of noise-induced hearing loss, including dentists, musicians, industrial workers, pilots and airline personnel, and workers in restaurants and nightclubs.
How earmolds can help
Fortunately, earmold assistives can provide significant hearing protection, and there are different options that deal with specific situations. Our team offers personalized solutions to ensure you get the protection you need without limiting your experience or performance.
For example, we might recommend earmolds with in-ear monitors for a musician. This option protects from loud noise but doesn’t distort the music. Someone working with firearms would benefit from advanced shooting earplugs, which enhance normal speech but protect your inner ears simultaneously.
But hearing protection is only the beginning. Earmolds also serve other purposes, such as:
- Keeping water out of your ears
- Blocking out sounds for a restful sleep
- Creating custom hearing aids, especially involving severe hearing loss
We use earmolds to address a variety of hearing and noise-related issues, and we start with an audiology consultation, hearing evaluation, or hearing test. Once we clearly understand your specific needs, we can recommend the best treatment approach moving forward.
Are you worried about hearing loss or considering getting hearing protection? Contact the Sharp Hearing Care Professionals to schedule a consultation today.