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How Do I Choose the Best Shooting Hearing Protectors?

Ear plugs can help prevent trauma from loud noises such as gunshots.
A man at a shooting range.
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  • Written By: K. Gierok
  • Edited By: John Allen
  • Last Modified Date: 11 December 2014
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No matter if it is done for hobby or employment, many individuals shoot a gun on a regular basis. Unfortunately, when the proper form of hearing protection in not worn, these same individuals can end up with high amounts of severe hearing loss. In order to avoid this occurrence, it is important that those who shoot a gun on a regular basis use shooting hearing protectors. In order to find the best hearing protectors, it is important first to look for a product that offers the highest amount of hearing protection. Looking for hearing protectors that are both comfortable and fit within a designated price range is also important when making a purchase.

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Individuals who are looking for the best shooting hearing protectors should first look for protectors that offer the highest level of hearing protection. Governing agencies that regulate hearing protectors use a scale, known as the Noise Reduction Rating Scale (NRRS), which gives each device a rating based on its ability to protect against extremely loud noise. The best hearing protectors typically are given a NRRS score of at least 36. When looking for shooting hearing protectors, therefore, customers should look for the NRRS score in order to make an informed decision. In most cases, these values will be printed on the side or front of the package. Customers who are interested in the NRRS score of a particular hearing protector, and cannot find it on the package, can usually be provided with information by contacting the manufacturer either by phone or over the Internet.

When choosing shooting hearing protectors, it is also important for customers to look for a product that is comfortable to wear. No matter how effective a protector is at eliminating noise and hearing loss, if it is not worn, it will not provide benefits. Those who are looking for shooting hearing protectors can, therefore, try on a variety of different styles before settling on one particular item. In many cases, manufacturers make a variety of different models of hearing protectors, all of which contain the same level of hearing protection.

In order to select the best shooting hearing protector, it is important to keep cost in mind. While hearing protectors can be, in some cases, a bit expensive, the costs associated with the treatment of serious hearing loss are usually substantially higher. Despite this, consumers should purchase a hearing protector that fits within their budget. As with the style of hearing protectors, most companies typically make shooting hearing protectors at a variety of price ranges.

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Vincenzo
Post 2

@Terrificli -- If you don't want to spring for protective shooting gear, grab some good ear plugs. Those will keep out more noise than anything else and they are dirt cheap. So, you can save money and get more protection. That's the way to go.

Terrificli
Post 1

If you are someone who likes to shoot regularly, do not overlook hearing protection. A lot of people do that and it is a horrible mistake. The only exception to that rule is that you don't really need to worry about hearing protection while shooting a decent .22 rifle or something small because those aren't very loud.

When I was younger, we'd often go shooting without hearing protection. My shotguns and .357 magnum pistol were loud as could be. My ears would ring for days after firing off a few boxes of shells. That was just dumb. These days, I've got to have some hearing protection when I go to the range to avoid damaging my ears.

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