May is Better Hearing Month, so here are some tips for protecting your hearing.

Spring and summer bring lots of opportunities for outdoor fun– concerts, sports activities, picnics and barbecues. And of course, chores, which may include the use of power tools.

Sounds of the Seasons

The sounds of spring and summer aren’t all buzzing bees and wind in the trees. Lawn mowers and power tools are capable of emitting very loud sound, sometimes up to 90 decibels. (A decibel is a measure of the intensity of a sound.) Hearing sounds above 85 decibels for over 30 minutes is dangerous and can permanently damage your hearing. Here are some examples of the decibel level of common sounds:

*Normal conversation: 60 decibels

*Traffic: 70 decibels

*Lawn mowers/power tools: 90 decibels

*Concerts/sports events: 110 decibels

*Jets taking off: 120 decibels

*Jackhammers and ambulances: 130 decibels

*Fireworks: 140 decibels

Protecting Your Hearing

Steer clear of very loud sounds when you can – Let the professionals light firecrackers, and never use firearms without proper hearing protection.

One of the best – and easiest – ways to protect your hearing is to wear earplugs. They can block loud sounds while still allowing you to hear normal conversation and music. While disposable earplugs are relatively inexpensive, the best approach for protecting your hearing is with custom hearing protection.

For the best fit, a hearing specialist can fit you with custom ear protection. For custom protection, please call Arizona Hearing Specialists at 520.448.2895 to schedule an appointment.