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The effects of not using an ear protection sign

What happens when you don’t have an ear protection sign?

If you have any level of responsibility for your employees - such as the manager or supervisor of a workplace - then you’ll need to make sure they are aware of the dangers of not wearing ear protection when exposed to loud noise. This article is an introduction to what people suffer from after not wearing ear protection and why it is important to wear them.

Ear protections signs are often seen in industrial environments, but they may come up anywhere there is a risk of noise levels being too high. And while no one enjoys wearing those clunky headbands or bulky foam like covers, sometimes it cannot be avoided if you want to keep your hearing intact.

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The importance of ear protection sign

An ear protection sign means that any noise over a certain level is harmful to your ears. The risk of damage increases with increasing noise levels.

The ear protection signs are usually placed in key places around the workplace, such as along the road outside or at entrance doors to the premises. Such signs will be there so that workers know where they are and how loud noise can cause damage to their hearing.

Some ear protection signs even have a symbol of a man sitting in an open field with his head in his hands. This shows the genuine danger when hearing loss occurs because of noise exposure.

What happens when you don’t have an ear protection sign?

The good news is that most people know how damaging loud noises are to their hearing and choose to wear ear protection. However, there are a minority of people who don’t understand that they don’t need to wear them and instead choose to ignore them.

Regardless of the amount of noise you’re exposed to or how long you’ve been in noisy work environments, damage will still occur if you don’t protect your ears with ear protection.

Once your ears have been damaged from overexposure, it will take time for the hearing loss to reverse itself - sometimes it can take years!

Ear protection signs are important, you can print the ones form this page as a stop-gap until you get the original signs to put up!

The most common symptoms caused by not wearing ear protection include:

1) Tinnitus

This is the most common symptom of someone who has suffered hearing damage. Many people describe tinnitus as a ringing in the ears, however, it can also be described as hissing, whistling or buzzing noises. Tinnitus can either come and go depending on the person or it can be permanent.

The severity of tinnitus varies from person to person and may even change its intensity. You should note that if you have experienced tinnitus in the past, then it’s likely you will continue to suffer from it in future if you do not protect your ears from loud noise.

2) Temporary hearing loss

Temporary hearing loss is another symptom of damage to your ears. The hearing loss will occur gradually and should go away.

3) Permanent Hearing Loss

If the noise levels are high enough for a prolonged period, then once the exposure is over you may find you have permanent hearing loss. For example, if you have worked in a factory for 10 years and had no ear protection, then you may find that you suffer from permanent hearing loss after the 10-year period has ended.

However, it’s important to note that this does not mean that everyone who has worked in a factory for 10 years will develop permanent hearing loss - only some people do.

4) Ringing in the ears

This is a symptom of tinnitus and as well as sounding like a ringing, it can also sound like the sea. The ringing can be loud and may cause you to lose sleep at night. This symptom does not go away - it may get worse!

5) Dizziness or vertigo

Again, this is a symptom of tinnitus and while it can be caused by other things too, it is one of the major symptoms. You may find that you feel dizzy if you are exposed to loud noise for an extended period.

 

How to know if you need ear protection sign

If you are exposed to loud noises for long periods of time, then you should think about getting an ear protection sign. This is important for a few reasons:

You will prevent yourself from developing hearing damage.

You can reduce the amount of damage to your ears if you wear them in advance rather than waiting until your ears have already been damaged.

You may get an increase in quality of work if you wear the ear protection when around loud noise. This is because the ear protection will muffle any external sounds so you can focus on what’s going on around you more clearly.

You need to know that if your employees are exposed to loud noise for a certain amount of time, then you will need to provide them with a suitable ear protection sign for your workplace.

There are two main types of ear protection, which are:

1) The first type is called standard muff-type protectors, which is easily identified because they have the letters NRR (Noise Reduction Rating) on them. Usually you will only see these types of ear protection in the factories or similar noisy workplaces as they can muffle external noises and sound levels. Both the hearing protection and earmuffs should be adjustable so you can get the right fit.

2) The second type is earplugs, which are not as effective at muffling sound, but are more convenient for the person wearing them. Earplugs should only be used in quieter environments and they should never be worn for an extended period.

 

Important Information about Noise Levels

Now that you know you need an ear protection signs in your workplace, learn a little more about noise levels so you can understand why they are so important.

1) The decibel scale is used to measure noise levels, and it ranges from 0db at the quietest end up to 140db at the loudest end. So, where does this figure come from? It’s taken from the unit called the bel, which measures sound levels as pressures or absolute decibels (dB).

2) The scale above is called a logarithmic scale, and it starts at 10 decibels at the quietest end and rises to 140db at the loudest. Therefore, when you’re working at work, wear ear protection so that your ears don’t become damaged by extreme noise levels.

 

Noise levels in different workplaces - Workplace Noise Levels (in decibels)

More information about noise levels can be found in the following work:

Heavy industry - this includes factories, construction sites, power stations, etc. The noise levels in these places are usually high and loud because of the amount of machinery or equipment running. The noise levels can reach as much as 150dB even though it is not technically possible to do this. You may also hear animal sounds like roosters or dogs barking in these places.

- this includes factories, construction sites, power stations, etc. The noise levels in these places are usually high and loud because of the amount of machinery or equipment running. The noise levels can reach as much as 150dB even though it is not technically possible to do this. You may also hear animal sounds like roosters or dogs barking in these places.

Commercial - this is where you will find supermarkets, shops, and offices. The equipment in these workplaces can create a lot of noise but the levels are usually not at 150dB.

- this is where you will find supermarkets, shops, and offices. The equipment in these workplaces can create a lot of noise but the levels are usually not at 150dB.

Domestic - this includes homes and small businesses where you’ll find small engines running or power tools such as leaf blowers, power drills, hand-saws.

- this includes homes and small businesses where you’ll find small engines running or power tools such as leaf blowers, power drills, hand-saws.

Institutional - this is where you will typically find schools, hospitals, and nursing homes. The noise levels in these places can reach 100dB and above

 

Noises 

The following infographic shows a list of the various noises when you are out and about. Any noise over 70-80db over a long period of time may cause damage to your hearing. A noise of over 120dB may cause immediate harm to your ears

infograhic ear damage 4

Examples of ear protection signs:

The following are standard ear protection signs.

Please Note: Just because an ear defender is marked, for example, "Gunshot" - it will still cover other things, like "explosions"

NMC C516RB CAUTION - HEARING PROTECTION REQUIRED BEYOND THIS POINT...
  • Caution Signage: is often used as a safety measure to alert people about the areas with harmful loud noises and need for hearing protection. This caution sign is typically found in areas with blasting machinery, explosives, fireworks, or jet engines
  • Material: the sign made from Rigid Plastic Polystyrene has an impressive, indoor and outdoor lifespan. This standard sign is supplied with radius corners and pre-drilled corner mounting holes for easy installation
  • High Visibility: the OSHA caution sign has legend “CAUTION – HEARING PROTECTION REQUIRED BEYOND THIS POINT” in clear font, ensuring easy readability. The legible text offers maximum visibility in busy corridors or passageways
  • Product Specifications: the 0.040 in. thick plastic caution sign has 14 in. width and 10 in. height. The rectangular sign features Black text on Yellow base
  • Sign Muscle: this caution hearing protection signage has NMC Sign Muscle coating that protects the text and image against fading, scratches, scuffing, graffiti and mold. The UV-cured, clear coating creates a strong bond and boosts the color and clarity
Hearing Protection Required When Equipment Operating Sign, ANSI...
  • ✔ HIGH QUALITY, LONG LASTING - We use only first-class materials to manufacture our vinyl stickers. Made from 4 mil thick vinyl decal sticker, and will stay good as new even after many years of indoor or outdoor use. Plus, our vinyl stickers are made in the USA!
  • ✔ NO FADING - The graphics and wordings will withstand the elements and will not fade, no matter the sun, rain, or other extreme weather.
  • ✔ EASY INSTALLATION - Simply peel the back and stick them on any surface flat or curved. No need for any tools or equipment!
  • ✔ PERFECT SIZE - We have carefully designed this sign, considering every aspect. This unique size gives the ability for the wording to stand out and be easily understood without creating an aggressive environment!
  • ✔ PROFESSIONAL GRAPHICS - Ideal for both home & yard use and for professional businesses, our signs are carefully designed to look sleek, authoritative, and easy to read.
SmartSign "Danger - Hearing Protection Required Beyond This Point"...
  • DURABLE PLASTIC. Signs use 55 mil thick HDPE (high density polyethylene) and can last up to 2 years outside. Signs have a 100% recyclable base material.
  • ROUNDED CORNERS. Signs have rounded corners and burr-free corners for safe handling, longer life and a professional appearance.
  • DIGITAL PRINTING. Signs are digitally printed in high resolution and over coated for additional protection.
  • INSTALLATION. Signs have pre-punched and pre-cleared mounting holes for easy installation. Signs mount to walls, fence posts and doors, and can be used indoors or outdoors.
  • PROMOTE SAFETY. This Hearing Protection Required sign can prevent hearing loss and damage to your workers.

Last update on 2021-06-22 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Other Questions

What are common activities that would require hearing protection?

1) Leaf blower

2) Planer

3) Ironworker

4) Sawing machine

5) Woodworking machinery

6) Earth moving equipment

7) Pounding metal in a shop, yard or anywhere you have a hammer and a piece of steel.

8) Anything with noise.

 

Are there any ear plugs that block all noise?

No there are not, there is no such ear plug. There are different ear plugs which block different noises, and you must know which noise you want to protect from so that you can get the right ear plugs.

No matter which earplugs you use, there will always be some noise that you cannot block with an earplug.

 

How do you stop your hearing loss from getting worse?

If you already have hearing loss, the best way to stop the hearing loss from getting worse is that you get a good pair of earplugs. The earplugs are not just for work; they are also for everyday noise that you don’t want to hear.

There are other factors that you should consider about this. For example, the time that you will be exposed to the hazard is a factor. There are other factors as well that you need to consider, such as how many hours a day are you exposed and how is the exposure? How often do you take breaks or leave from the hazards? These are some questions you have to consider when deciding whether if it’s really safe for you to continue working in an environment where there’s noise.

Author: Nick

Hi, I am Nick, and I have suffered with ear problems my whole life, mainly tinnitus. I have tried a lot of products to help protect my ears over this period, and several devices to block out the constant ringing

“Are you having problems hearing? If so, those around you already know it. Hearing loss is no laughing matter, so don’t be a punchline.”

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