Is it Good For Your Ears to Wear Earplugs?

Man using earplugs to protect his hearing before a concert.

Earplugs can be beneficial if you’re subjected to loud noises, such as, something as simple as a snoring spouse, or a lawnmower in your yard, or going to an arena to see a concert. Lowering the volume is how earplugs can help in the first two circumstances. They assist in saving your peace of mind and perhaps even your relationships, in the last situation, by letting you get a good night’s sleep. But is your hearing being harmed by these protectors?

What’s The Purpose of Utilizing Earplugs?

It’s a fairly simple argument for wearing earplugs: Properly used, earplugs can help to safeguard your hearing by minimizing your direct exposure to extreme decibel levels. Perhaps you’ve noticed that your hearing sounds different when you leave a loud venue, for instance, a football game with a loud crowd, and you might also have symptoms of tinnitus. This occurs because those super-loud sounds can actually bend the tiny hair cells inside your inner ear. It usually goes away within a couple of days, because the hair cells have recovered.

But in some instances, there is a constant attack on those tiny hairs, this is especially true if you work in a high volume industry such as the music business or in an airport. Rather than recovering after bending, the cells are permanently damaged. inside of each cochlea, you have around 16,000 of these tiny hair cells, but up to 50% of them can be injured or ruined before your hearing has changed enough for the deficiency to show up in a hearing assessment.

Is it Possible That Your Ears Could be Damaged by Earplugs?

With regards to safeguarding your hearing, you’d think it would be a no-brainer to make use of earplugs. But primarily if you’re in scenarios where you’re subjected to loud noises every day (like on the job or with the previously mentioned snoring significant other), headphones that decrease, but don’t totally cancel, sound or over the head earmuffs are a much smarter idea. Earplugs aren’t well suited to daily use but are better suited to one time events like a sports event or a concert.

Why? For one, earwax. Your ears generate wax to defend themselves, and if wearing earplugs is something you do frequently, more earwax will be generated, and the earplugs will jam it in further. Tinnitus and other complications can be the result of impacted earwax.

Ear infections can be another complication for those who wear earplugs. They can become bacteria traps if you wear the same pair but fail to properly clean and disinfect them. Ear infections are, at the very least, an uncomfortable inconvenience. But at the negative end of the scale, they can also result in hearing loss if neglected.

How Can You Utilize Earplugs Without Risk?

Whether it’s a good night sleep or safeguarding your ears, there’s still a formidable benefit to wearing earplugs. You just need to be sure you’re using the correct kind and utilizing them the right way. Foam earplugs are the least costly, which is helpful because you really shouldn’t reuse them, the cushy, porous material is a germ’s haven. Wax or silicone earplugs are reusable, but you have to keep them clean, wash them with warm water and mild soap to cleanse them, and don’t put them back in your ears until they’re thoroughly dry. Buildup of dampness can cause mold and bacteria so store your earplugs in a well ventilated place.

If you need or want to use earplugs on a regular basis, you may want to consult us about getting custom-made earplugs. They’re comfortable since they are made from molds of your ears and they’re reusable. But it’s crucial not to forget, smart earplug hygiene can lessen hearing damage.

Why wait? You don't have to live with hearing loss. Call Us Today