Musician Hearing Health
Pursuing your career in music is an extremely rewarding experience.
It also puts you in the high-risk category for high-frequency hearing loss.
Too many of us, myself included, have practice, performed, or done sound engineering without proper hearing protection. And each time, we risk losing a few (ear) hair cells.
Increased stress, anxiety and fatigue is one of the first telltale signs of too much sound exposure. Your ears are working too hard, and your body is struggling to keep up.
Have ringing in your ears or headaches after a long day of practice and gigs? That’s tinnitus – your ear’s way of signalling to you that something is wrong. Don’t dismiss it. Continued exposure to excessively high sound volumes can result in hyperacusis, which is a much more severe and debilitating condition. It’s a showstopper for many musicians.
There is no cure for noise-induced hearing loss. The ability to detect those frequencies NEVER come back.
So it’s important to practice at safe volumes where possible, and to wear good hearing protection when you can’t control the volume.
Good hearing protection solves problems. Bad hearing protection creates more problems.
Three steps to ensure you choose good hearing protection:
Get the right sound reduction
If you’re playing in an acoustic band, or in a place that clocks an average of 90 decibels (dB), you don’t want to reduce the volume by more than 15 dB. That can feel very isolating, and you might miss the softer nuances of your piece. But if you’re playing drums, rock or metal, that usually clocks in at about 120 dB. You want to make sure you get 25 dB or 27 dB earplugs. Don’t worry, you’ll still hear the full spectrum of sound, just at a safe and comfortable volume.
Choose great sound clarity and minimal reverberation
There is no point protecting your ears at the expense of hearing muffled music. Communication becomes almost impossible, and the muddy sound ruins the beauty of what you’re trying to create. Many “musician earplugs” use tube filters, which still introduce some reverberation. White Cat Earplugs are the only non-custom earplugs available in New Zealand that use pill-filters. We test each acoustic filter to make sure that you’re getting the sound quality and sound reduction you need.
Snug, Comfortable Fit
Make sure that you have a proper fit
Every ear is different. Make sure that your earplugs fit snugly in your ear. Otherwise, the sound leakage renders your earplugs ineffective! Book an earplug fitting with us today to make sure you get the perfect fit.
Optional but highly recommended: Make sure that you have equal reduction in sound across all frequencies. White Cat Pro-Musician earplugs have a super flat attenuation, so it’s just like turning down the volume of your stereo. None of the sound quality is lost. But everything is at a comfortable volume. And your ears are safe.