Musicians rock. Their performances bring us so much happiness. The drawback is that music is nearly always loud, in fact, many individuals prefer it that way. The musicians themselves are at an increased danger of hearing damage since they are subjected to loud music nearly every day.
Whether your living relies on music or not, you’ll still want to be able to hear your favorite songs when you’re in your later years of life. The key to having an extended successful career, for musicians, is protecting their ears. For the rest of us, hearing protection is the secret to a lifetime of musical enjoyment and enrichment.
Music is surprisingly loud
Most people would say that a jet engine is really loud.
Is music really that loud? People may not be so quick to answer that question if you ask them if a violin or acoustic guitar is loud. Imagine their surprise when they discover the reality: That can also be very loud music! Your ears can even be damaged by classical music which can get to relatively high volumes.
Sounds louder than 90 dB can be created by a violin, for example. A leaf blower is about this noisy. To put that into context, the European Union laws dictate that any workplace noisier than 85 dB requires the use of hearing protection.
And your hearing can be significantly compromised over time if you’re working with music every day, especially if you don’t use ear protection.
How can you safeguard your hearing?
Okay, now you know that musicians need to protect their hearing (especially if they want to keep on rocking out for years to come). So how can musicians keep enjoying their music while also preserving their hearing?
Here are a couple of tips:
- Track your volume: Everybody knows the old saying “knowledge is power”. So knowing volume levels of sounds around you will help you safeguard your hearing. Sometimes, this is as simple as tracking your volume settings on amps and receivers. But you can also monitor day-to-day volume levels of external noises using a volume meter app that you can download on your cellphone. You will need to make some changes if the meter regularly reads louder than 85 dB.
- Take breaks: Your ears are the same as any other part of your body: they can be overworked and will frequently benefit from rest. So take frequent breaks from the noise. This will help stop your ears from becoming overpowered with noise (and damage). Duration is almost as relevant as volume with regard to hearing health. Taking breaks can be the difference between just the right amount of stimulation and too much!
hearing protection is important
Needless to say, the single most beneficial thing you can do to safeguard your hearing is easy: wearing ear protection of some kind. A lot of musicians are worried that ear protection will mute the sound and impact its overall sound quality. But depending on what type of hearing protection you use, that might not always be accurate.
- Ear plugs made specifically for musicians: Most people are probably familiar with disposable ear plugs. They’re pretty good at stopping a lot of sound though they sometimes don’t fit very well. They’re not hard to get, don’t cost much, and can be disposed of easily. For musicians, they aren’t the best solution. However, by spending just a little more money, you can buy high-quality earplugs designed chiefly for musicians. These earplugs use fancy manufacturing methods (mostly they’re made out of very distinct materials and are designed to conform nicely to the ear) to preserve audio fidelity while decreasing the noise you hear by around 20dB. For musicians who need a moderate level of protection on a budget, this option is perfect.
- Electronic earplugs: The same general functionality found in non-electronic earplugs can also be found in electronic earplugs. The earplug itself will block out the majority of the sound. But the earplug itself will pipe in the sound you hear. This option is perfect for people who work in particularly noisy settings, and who want more options when it comes to volume control.
- In-ear monitors: The majority of music is electronic nowadays, or at least amplified by electronics. An in-ear monitor takes those electronic signals and conveys them directly to a device placed in your ear (called an in-ear monitor). The majority of monitors are small speakers that fit tightly and block out the majority of sound while playing sounds you want to hear at safe volumes. So you control the volume level and are able to hear sound accurately and clearly. In-ear monitors are practical for people who work mainly with electronically amplified instruments.
Safeguard your ears, and protect your career
It’s best to start safeguarding your hearing early, before any significant harm occurs. With options available at nearly every price point, there are simple ways for everybody to safeguard their hearing and their future. Don’t forget that you’re investing in your career by utilizing hearing protection for musicians. It’s one way to be certain you’ll be making incredible music for many years (maybe even decades) to come!
Give us a call so we can help you get started.