Hunters and the Need for Hearing Protection

Q.  When I’m hunting I don’t need to fire many shots, so does it really matter whether or not I wear earplugs?

A.  Yes, you need to protect yourself from loud noises of all kinds.  Whether loud sounds come from music, hammers, power tools, vacuum cleaners, engines, explosions or gunfire, any sound reaching levels greater than 80 decibels (dBA) can cause permanent damage to our ears.   It can also raise blood pressure, cause fatigue and distractibility, and make people irritable.  Circulation problems or certain other medical conditions add an extra high risk for noise induced hearing loss.  When strong vibrations accompany loud noise, it increases the extent of hearing loss even more. 

The greater the number of decibels, the more hearing you can expect to lose.  A typical vacuum cleaner, power saw or drill can produce about 90 dBA of noise, while jet engines can produce about 140, for example.  Compare this to the average loudness of conversational speech, which is about 50 or whispered speech at about 30.   Hand guns and rifles produce noise levels of about 140 to 150 dBA, and shotguns can produce noises greater than 170!  It doesn’t take many repetitions of noises this loud to cause a hearing loss.  Exposure to sound from even a single shot has caused permanent hearing loss in some individuals.  Repeated exposure to loud sounds over time will gradually add up to a serious hearing problem.  Hunters and anyone else who is regularly around loud sounds should invest in proper hearing protection.  Our audiologists can help identify the best type of custom earplugs or earmuffs that are designed for the type of noise you’re in.  Protect your hearing while you still have it!

September 10, 2015
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Q.  Is it safe for someone to wear hearing aids if they have Alzheimer’s or other types of dementia?

A.  Yes, but there are some precautions needed whenever someone with a hearing loss has cognitive challenges.  Here are some tips: 

  • Persons with dementia or developmental disabilities and children can all benefit from tamper resistant battery doors.  This reduces the likelihood of losing or swallowing batteries.  If anyone swallows a battery, quickly make a collect call to the Button Battery Poison Control phone number: 202) 625-3333.   
  • Ask your audiologist to deactivate the volume control and other control buttons on hearing aids so that the wearer cannot change the loudness or sound quality.  If needed, a remote control can be used by care-givers to adjust the aids’ sound. 
  • Persons with cognitive problems may be prone to losing their hearing aids, so it is helpful to have your audiologist put the wearer’s initials on the aids and earmolds.  You can also use a special cord and clip to fasten hearing aids to the back of a collar so the aids don’t get lost quite as easily if pulled out of the ears.   

Dementia can cause a tendency to be inattentive or paranoid.  Good communication with caregivers is especially important.  Being able to hear and communicate as easily as possible can reduce the degree of confusion and fearfulness of persons with dementia and it helps them pay attention better. 

Remember, everyone deserves to hear!

By Michigan Ears, Nose, and Throat
February 06, 2013
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Welcome to the Blog of Michigan Ear, Nose and Throat Associates

Michigan Ear, Nose, and Throat Associates, Bloomfield Hearing, and Bloomfield Facial Plastic Surgery would like to welcome you to our blog.  Here you will find informative and useful postings about otolaryngology, audiology and our practice.

At Michigan Ear, Nose, and Throat Associates we believe that educated patients are better prepared to make decisions regarding their health and wellbeing.  Our blog was designed to provide you with valuable ear, nose and throat information, the latest otolaryngology and and hearing instrument developments, and health advice from our dedicated team. 

Michigan Ear, Nose, and Throat Associates, Bloomfield Hearing and Bloomfield Facial Plastic Surgery hope you find our blog to be a great resource for keeping up to date with proper otolaryngology care and treatments.

We welcome all comments and questions.

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Welcome to the Blog of Michigan Ear, Nose and Throat Associates, Bloomfield Hearing, and Bloomfield Facial Plastic Surgery





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