Ahhh …. summer. The great outdoors. Picnics, swimming, sports, festivals, fireworks! It’s a fantastic time of the year, especially for us Midwesterners. But with all the fun and fanfare, it can be easy to forget the “hidden dangers,” that is, the sounds of summer. Lawnmowers, concerts, cheering crowds – prolonged exposure to all of these can result in hearing loss or deficit. Even a chorus of cicadas can approach 100 decibels, which is as loud as a freight train!
The good news is that proper ear protection can help prevent hearing loss. Most of us are familiar with the common, disposable foam earplug. While using these is better than nothing, they still have their drawbacks when it comes to durability, fit, comfort and quality of sound. Custom earplugs are superior to disposable options in all these measures.
Cost-effective and eco-friendly
You might be surprised, but custom earplugs are more cost-effective than disposable options. Let’s suppose you wear earplugs for work, 5 days a week for 52 weeks per year. At $.20 each that adds up to more than $50 per year! Given that the price of custom earplugs is around $150, you can see the cost savings over time. And they’re eco-friendly. That’s a lot of earplugs that won’t end up in a landfill.
A perfect fit means the best sound reduction
For those who are going to loud environments such as a shooting range or an Indy car race, it is vital to have an earplug that provides the greatest sound reduction possible to prevent hearing loss and/or tinnitus. A custom earplug does this because it is a perfect fit to your ear. For those who have a history of chronic ear infections or tubes, or who have eardrum perforations, it is imperative to have a properly fitting earplug to prevent water from getting in and causing an infection. Custom swim plugs float, offer an excellent fit and are a great option that is also available at our office.
For those who appreciate music, custom earplugs with filters can help preserve the integrity of music through high-fidelity filters that reduce the “noise” and allow the music to come through. They help retain sound quality while lowering the volume of your surroundings.
Quick and comfortable
Perhaps the biggest advantage custom designs have over off-the-shelf earplugs is the comfort. Properly placing a foam earplug can sometimes be difficult and tedious. Using something custom ensures a quick and proper fit because they’re specially designed for you, not mass-produced at a factory. This makes them ideal for musicians, swimmers, light sleepers, or anyone who needs a comfortable, custom fit. For children or people with small ear canals, they’ll stay in place. No more pop-out plugs!
There are numerous different types of earplugs that we can make or order at our office, whether it be for work, lifestyle, or recreation. Please contact audiology with any questions – we’re happy to help!
To schedule a hearing check or to be fitted for custom earplugs, call 773-296-5500.