SAFETY TIP TUESDAY- NCESD
Provided by the North Central ESD Workers Compensation Trust
"What? I Didn’t Catch That!"
Sensitive structures in the inner ear can be damaged when you are exposed to loud noise over 85 decibels. Depending upon the intensity and length of the exposure, this can result in noise-induced hearing loss.
Noise-induced hearing loss can be:
- Immediate or come on gradually.
- Temporary or permanent.
- Affect one ear or both ears.
Noise-induced hearing loss can be prevented by limiting exposure to loud sounds and/or using hearing protection such as ear plugs or ear muffs to reduce your exposure!
- Have to SHOUT to talk to someone less than 3 feet away
- Use noisy tools & equipment
- Operate noisy vehicles, i.e., tractor, motorcycle, snowmobile, riding lawn mower, etc.
- Use firearms
- Play in a loud band or attending a loud concert.
*Images used with permission from Dangerous Decibels and cannot be reproduced without their consent.
To Get the Best Protection When Using Foam Earplugs, Remember ROLL, PULL, & HOLD!
Roll the earplug between your fingers to make it into a small, thin “snake”.
Reaching over your head with your opposite hand, gently pull the top of your ear up and backwards to straighten out your ear canal. The rolled up earplug should easily slide right in.
Hold the earplug in place with your finger while counting out loud to 30. This will allow the earplug time to expand and fill the ear canal. If your voice sounds muffled you have a good seal.
*Images illustrating “Roll, Pull, & Hold” used with permission from NIOSH.
Finally, Take Time to Make Sure You Have a Good Seal!
Most of the foam earplug should be inside the ear canal. Cup your hands tightly over your ears. If sounds are much more muffled with your hands in place, the earplug may not be sealing properly. Take the earplug out and try again.