For many applications I use ear plugs because they don’t get in the way of wearing a hat and they can’t get knocked out of place like ear muff style hearing protection. For really noisy work, I wear ear plugs and ear muffs. An overlooked advantage of ear muffs is they keep your ears clean while doing dirty work. It’s been a long time since my mother checked behind my ears or said something like, “There’s so much dirt in those ears, you could grow potatoes.” So, I’m on my own with respect to keeping my ears clean. Ear muff style protection for my hearing helps me do just that. I use them during especially dusty conditions such as:
- roto-tilling the garden
- grinding metal
- cutting material with power saws
- working outside in the wind
The difference in cleanliness is remarkable. If you think about it, dust and dirt are just two forms of foreign objects that shouldn’t be in your ears. Using ear muff style hearing protection for your ears could help prevent other larger objects from getting in your ears as well. The first thing that comes to mind are hot sparks from welding and grinding.
Even if you’re not doing especially dangerous work that might put your hearing and ears at risk of injury, being able to preserve your sense of hearing and keeping excess dirt out of your ears can make ear muff style hearing protection a worthwhile investment.