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What Is Sensorineural Hearing Loss?
The ear is a complex organ that plays a wide-ranging role in life’s experiences. For these reasons, hearing loss can be caused by many different factors. Some causes of hearing loss have solutions, and others do not, but understanding the types of hearing loss is crucial for any hope of recovery.

   

There are two main types of hearing loss. One of these is conductive hearing loss, which affects the outer and middle ear. The other type of hearing loss is called sensorineural, or nerve related hearing loss. This refers to some sort of malfunction with the inner ear.

  Because we deal in shooting ear protection, sensorineural hearing loss is much more relevant to us at ESP. As you might expect, acoustic trauma is a leading cause of sensorineural hearing loss—in other words, loud noises like gunshots.

  Other common causes of sensorineural hearing loss include trauma to the head, sudden and dramatic changes in air pressure, in which the only hope to save hearing  is often some type of emergency procedure.

  Even viral and bacterial diseases can cause sensorineural hearing loss. In the case of diseases, hearing loss can be either a main component or a side effect of an ailment. When a side effect, treatment of the disease might allow for partial or complete recovery. Auto-immune diseases can also cause sensorineural hearing loss by mistakenly attacking and damaging the inner ear over time.

  But then there’s what’s known as irreversible sensorineural hearing loss, the type that can be caused by exposure to loud noises without the proper protection. Often, the only recourse is to have hearing aids installed. While hearing aids are wonderful for those who rely on them, they are far from a perfect or permanent solution.

  The only way to truly eliminate hearing loss is to prevent it from happening in the first place by wearing ear protection. Some shooter shy away from ear protection because they believe it compromises the quality of sound, but these people have never tried digital ear protection. To learn more about what modern technology has to offer in preventing sensorineural hearing loss, visit the ESP website today.

Acoustic Trauma Can Damage Your Hearing
Hearing ProtectionAcoustic trauma sounds like the name of a rock band, doesn’t it? Actually, acoustic trauma refers to injuries to your hearing in the inner ear due to very loud noise, such as gunshots, machinery, explosions, or rock music concerts.

When your inner ear can’t handle the loud noise(s), you may experience temporary–or permanent–hearing loss. Further, you may not be able to hear high-pitched sounds or you may develop tinnitus, which is a fancy word for ringing in the ear(s).

Acoustic trauma can be prevented by wearing ear protection, such as ear plugs. Otherwise, if the trauma is severe, a doctor may need to do eardrum repair or you may need to wear a hearing aid indefinitely.

If you’ve ever been to a very loud live event, such as a concert, you’ve probably experienced acoustic trauma already. Prolonged exposure to loud noise can cause what is known as a “permanent threshold shift,” which means irreversible, incurable hearing loss.

Acute acoustic trauma refers to a very loud noise that causes sudden hearing loss. Typically, the noise is sudden and very loud, such as a gunshot. Without wearing ear protection, there’s a chance you’ve ruptured your eardrum(s).

How do you know if you’re dealing with acoustic trauma? It’s not rocket science: do your ears hurt? Are they ringing? Is the noise so loud you have to shout to talk with other people? These are some clear signs that you need to get away from the intense noise levels asap.

Do yourself a favor and bring ear protection with you to places where you know there’ll be very loud noises, like the shooting range or football games. Electronic Shooters Protection (ESP) offers state-of-the-art hearing protection, custom made for your ears. If you want to avoid acoustic trauma, call ESP at 303-659-8844 and ask about their ear plugs and more.

Important Facts about Noise Induced Hearing Loss
Electronic Shooters Protection offers custom ear protection devices for hunters, gun shooters and others who want to protect their hearing from damage.

  One of the things too many people experience these days is called “noise induced hearing loss.” It’s a permanent condition people get when they are exposed to high levels of noise for extended periods of time. For instance, someone who works in the subway or on the tarmac at an airport can easily suffer from noise induced hearing loss if they don’t wear some sort of hearing protection.

Indeed, it has been said that one in 10 Americans is dealing with some sort of hearing loss, making it harder for them to understand normal, everyday speech. They can hear others talking–sure–but they can’t figure out the words being said. Their hearing is damaged from too many hours of loud noises.

Did you know that excessive noise is the most common cause of hearing loss? It makes sense, doesn’t it? We are surrounded by loud noises in today’s fast-paced, noisy society. Trucks on highways, TVs and stereos blasting commercials, shows and concerts, as well as airplanes, sirens and crowded events are all involved in putting a full-on assault on your poor ears. Add shooting guns and it’s easy to see why so many people are dealing with noise induced hearing loss these days.

Inside your ears are hair cells. These cells get destroyed by too much loud noise, and when they’re dead they’re dead. In other words, the damage is permanent.

You can prevent noise induced hearing loss, though. Obviously, if you can avoid prolonged exposure to loud noises, that will help. If you’re at a concert and near the speakers, move to the back of the venue so it’s not “right in your ear(s).” The other, more effective solution to the problem is making sure you wear proper hearing protection when you’re at places filled with loud noises, like sporting events, gun ranges, or race tracks. You can invest in earplugs, earmuffs, or customized in-ear electronic protection devices, which ESP sells. If you’re serious about protecting your hearing, visit http://espamerica.com/shop-now/.

Hearing Loss is on the Rise Among Young People
Recently on JacksonSun.com, Beth Knoll wrote an article talking about something going on that most people don’t realize: young people are having hearing problems and hearing loss.

It used to be that older people, over 65, were the ones known to be hard-of-hearing and needing hearing aids to hear their caregivers and grandchildren’s words. Nowadays, in a society where young people go to deafening music concerts and stand close to the speakers, as well as wear ear buds playing music at loud levels for extended periods of time, it’s no wonder that more and more audiologists are seeing younger patients.

Knoll quotes an audiologist who says, “Hearing loss occurs when loud noise damages the ear’s hair cells, which transmit neural impulses to the brain. After noise damages a hair cell, it no longer transmits neural impulses. Over time, the brain is not receiving the amount of impulses it needs to properly understand sounds such as speech, resulting in the need for hearing aids.”

Besides loud music, the article also mentions hunters not wearing protective hearing gear as another group of people audiologists deal with on a regular basis. While many shooters think nothing of it, just one gunshot, without hearing protection, can cause permanent hearing damage.

While today’s hearing aids aren’t as bulky as ones in the 1980s and 1990s, it’s recommended that people take precaution with their ears by wearing hearing protection, such as earplugs, when they’ll be around loud noises such as music and gunshots.

Electronic Shooters Protection sells state-of-the-art electronic hearing protection devices. The custom-fitted pieces have a precise fit, letting in normal, natural sounds, while blocking the crazy loud noises from hurting a person’s ears.

What Common Noises Cause Hearing Loss?
Have you ever talked to someone who’s spent some time in a sensory deprivation chamber? In some cases, they’ve been known to trigger severe anxiety and depression, among other problems, within minutes. As a human being, our senses are really all that we have when it comes to experiencing the world around us. Seeing, hearing, tasting, smelling, and touching are the gateways to our environment. So naturally, we don’t want to lose them.

 

We tend to overlook the worry of damaging our senses, however, especially early in life. Some people smoke, damaging their ability to taste and smell. Others look carelessly at the sun, causing damage to precious eyesight.

  But the sense that is perhaps most overlooked is that of hearing. Once the damage is done, it won’t come back, so the best way to preserve your ears is to be mindful of what you’re exposing them to. And even noises that might not seem so bad can be very harmful over time. Here are a few of the most common culprits to watch out for.

  Music How can it be? Sweet, sweet music? The louder you listen to music, the more damage you’re likely causing. Ever leave a rock concert with your ears ringing? Unfortunately, that’s a sign of damage. Those fans in the crowd wearing earplugs are one step ahead of everyone else. An MP3 player at full volume is shooting 105 decibels directly into your ears—well over the standard safety threshold of 75.

  Sirens How ironic is it that vehicles used solely to help others can cause hearing loss to those around them? Of course, loud sirens are necessary to announce the approach of an emergency vehicle.  There is a 120-200db rating at 100 feet from the sirens. Ultimately, it’s a case of the lesser of two evils. Besides, you’re really only at risk when the sirens are blaring nearby, so roll the car windows up or cover your ears when that happens.

  Engines Most types of engines, from a chainsaw to a motorcycle to a lawnmower, are louder than the safe 75-decibel limit. In fact, even keeping your window open on the highway can damage hearing over time. Ever hear of “trucker’s ear”? That’s when a truck driver loses hearing in their left ear from being on the road so much with their window down.

  Explosions This is the big one, and perhaps the most obvious. The noise emitted from an ignited firecracker or a discharged gun tops the list at 150 decibels—twice the safe limit. Because these “bangs” are relatively short, they are often overlooked and inadequately protected against.

  In each case, the best thing you can do is to invest in top quality ear protection that will minimize damage. In the case of loud gunshots, ESP analog and digital hearing protection is the unmatched choice for the serious shooter.

 

Why Digital Hearing Protection is Advantageous
Hunters, as well as gun range, backyard and target shooters can suffer serious and permanent damage to their inner ear drums when exposed to gunshots without wearing ear protection. Nevertheless, individuals will often neglect to use this protection, either because they are unaware of how significant the damage can be, or when their options consist of either awkward-fitting foam ear plugs, or bulky headphones that eliminate the natural sounds hunters rely on and prevent them from conversing with others.

Luckily, digital hearing protection, like ours at ESP, provides a solution. Our ear protection is neither cumbersome nor one-size-fits-all. Each pair is custom sized to your ears, providing a comfortable fit. They are also lightweight and easy to insert, and allow you to keep your focus on the target and your surroundings, rather than constantly readjusting your ear protection.

Electronic hearing protection will also permit lower decibel noise levels, like those from a conversation or the sounds around you in your environment, while still protecting from the louder sounds over 90dB. This extends the use of ESP’s hearing protection technology to many other fields.

Beyond all that, our product is incredibly durable. It will withstand countless hunting trips and visits to the gun range. With the benefit of protecting your eardrums from all types of noises, ESP’s digital hearing protection is a valuable investment for all gun owners.

For more information regarding our digital hearing protection for shooters, please feel free to contact us today.

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