Unusual Workplace Causes of Hearing Loss

September 13, 2012
CDC - Hearing Loss ProtectionIt is estimated that over 22 million workers are exposed to hazardous noise levels at work and according to the CDC, “Reported cases of hearing loss accounted for 14% of occupational illness in 2007.” When we think of workplace noise levels, the first places that come to mind are factories, construction, and mining where one expects that the area would be loud. But there are other, less common work situations where you also are at risk for hearing loss.

If you are in the military or work in law enforcement, you are exposed to sudden noises on a daily basis. Loud noises such as gunfire, explosions and loud engines or sirens can cause temporary and permanent hearing damage. Unfortunately, a sudden loud noise can cause hearing damage even after the first exposure, so it is important to protect your ears.

Even working in an office environment can be dangerous to your hearing. If construction is happening in the building, the construction workers are outfitted with hearing protection, surrounding offices may not realize the noise level can be causing damage and employees need to be protected.

Noise levels should be under 85 decibels(dbs) for eight hours to minimize risk for hearing loss. When you consider that an ordinary household blender or blow dryer easily hits 85 decibels, it puts into perspective how easy it is to exceed dangerous levels on any given day. If you work in an environment where there are constant loud levels (even a retail environment could be considered too loud) you should be supplied with ear protection.

Some examples of noise levels and industries where you may be exposed are as follows:  Loud Noises Unusual Workplace Hearing Loss

• Loud music – the music industry or certain retail environments and restaurants
• Power tools – construction, carpentry, and home improvement centers
• The noise from lawn mowers – gardeners and gardening centers
• Appliances – restaurants, the food industry, smoothie shops
• The noise from vehicles – mechanics and vehicle sales

Noise induced hearing loss (NIHL) is preventable, but hearing loss is permanent and irreversible once the damage has occurred. Custom Protect Ear offers the most effective hearing protection on the planet for every type of situation. From industry specific hearing protection to ear protection for personal use, CPE has ear protection devices for everyone!

Something new at Custom Protect Ear

August 28, 2012

Hearing Protection That Is More Proficient Than Ever

Those of you who visit the Custom Protect Ear (CPE) website often will have noticed a change recently (if you are one the site regularly you either work for us or need to get out more).  For the first time in our 36-year history, CPE is distributing a product we don’t make.  We have decided to distribute the Sensear product line in conjunction with our dB Blocker hearing protectors.  Why?  Because we are committed to being proficient in all forms of hearing protection for all circumstances.  Adding the Sensear product line completes our range (and completes Sensear’s product line as well).

Hearing Protection to complete the CPE Product Range. How?

If you wear hearing aids you need to preserve what is left of your hearing (I certainly would). How do you do that? You need your hearing aid(s) to fill in the missing frequencies so you know what is happening around you. But you still need to reduce the overall volume to a safe level. That an easy job for a muff style hearing protector.  BUT with most muff style hearing protectors you lose the ability to “hear” from where sounds are coming.  This loss of “situational awareness” can be deadly in a online casino noisy plant. Sensear Smart Muffs

Using the Sensear Smart Muff we can now provide  the hearing protection you need with enhanced situational awareness.  Finally, we have the right solution for persons who have already lost some hearing.

Ever been in a smelter?  The air can be toxic, the noise is deafening, but people have to work there. To keep safe they wear protective suits with helmets and shrouds.  To breathe they wear respirators connected to breathable air.  And to communicate they…exactly, how do you communicate with a shroud over your head and a respirator on your mouth?

SP Smart Plug

You use the Sensear SP unit with a dB Blocker earpiece. The earpiece and SP unit capture speech in the ear and broadcast it on whichever radio you are using.  Using Sensear’s SP with a dB Blocker earpiece you can now have perfect hearing effective radio communication in up to 110 dBA of noise.

Person to person communication?  How about hand signals.

Double Protection Smart Muffs

Mining is a noisy business.   Some parts of mining are noisier than others. When you have miners working in various parts of the mine, it often difficult to ensure they always have the right amount of protection from the noise – not too much and certainly not too little.  Using dB Blockers, we provide miners with great personal protection that will allow them to hear the “roof” and warning sounds.  When they have to move to louder areas, we fit a Sensear Smart Muff right over their blockers and they can hear their radios and speak to others in up to 120 dB (using the SDP muff). SDP-with-dB-blocker

These are just a few of the applications CPE can now address more capably by distributing Sensear.  Sensear also now has access to custom made earpieces for their units which affords the wearer enhanced comfort and attenuation.   It’s a marriage made in hearing.

Learn more about Smart Muffs. 


CPE: Sensear

July 12, 2012

Custom Protect Ear better serves their customers when it comes to personalized hearing and communication solutions.

Surrey, British Columbia, July 5th, 2012. Custom Protect Ear is proud to announce they will be distributing Sensear products to better serve their customers.  Both companies, Custom Protect Ear (CPE) and Sensear ,  are communication  and hearing protection specialists focused on providing clear communication and hearing protection in noisy environments.  Custom Protect Ear provides personalized hearing protection, dB Blockers™, which will integrate with select Sensear Smart Plug and Muff products. Sensear’s SENS (speech enhancement noise suppression) technology combined with the fit of a dB Blocker will give the wearer a radio communication and hearing protection experience ‘like they’ve never experienced before’.  Combine that with Sensear’s spatial recognition and the wearer is completely in touch with their surroundings. These two experiences combined will help reduce the ongoing ‘cost of noise’ in work environments. Click here to see the Sensear Products on Custom Protect Ears Website.

dB Blockers™ offer “The Smartest Hearing Protection in the World”, especially where interpersonal communication is required. The dB Blocker technology will reduce the cost of noise”; the cost of noise is hearing loss, productivity and risk management. Custom Protect Ear’s flagship product, dB Blockers™, eliminate hearing loss, mitigate risk management, and enhance productivity through effective communication.

“There is an underlying problem with the growing cost of hearing loss prevention in noisy work environments. It was documented that 40% of the companies surveyed reported that they had thought their workers lost up to 30 minutes a day when trying to communicate in noise. Plus, the average cost of hearing conversation programs is $310 per employee per year. With these costs combined with the workers compensation claims doubling in the last 10 years, companies are feeling the squeeze to their bottom line. There is also the issue of ‘human cost of risk management.  It is more important to reduce or eliminate accidents and fatalities in the workplace. If workers cannot hear or communicate, then it’s not clear, and hazards cannot adequately be avoided. It is only a win – win when workers are provided with the right hearing and communication devices that allows them to do their jobs in a noisy workplace.” says Custom Protect Ear’s, Jeffrey Goldberg.

Hearing protection and communication devices need to enable workers to have operational awareness in noisy environments. It is the mission of both Custom Protect Ear and Sensear to provide workers with the same experience in high noise induced areas as they would in low noise areas. Custom Protect Ear’s inventory of Sensear products will allow their customers (Industrial Hygienists, Occupational Therapists and Safety Professionals) to access a total hearing protection and communication solution. The solution, dB Blockers™, will enhance productivity, save money,  eliminate unnecessary costs and associated risks when it comes to providing workers with a safe working environment.


Founded in 2006 in Perth, Australia, and with joint headquarters in Perth and San Francisco, USA, Sensear is a world leader in the development and manufacture of high noise communication headsets. From a global network of sales offices Sensear is selling to end users via distributors,dealers and resellers in the majority of countries around the world. Sensear’s patented combination of hardware and software, isolates, cleans and packages speech while suppressing background noise to a safe level. The award winning technology has been incorporated into both ear plug and ear muff headsets that, whilst retaining situational awareness, enable face to face, mobile/cell phone, short range and two way radio communication in the harshest and noisiest of environments.


Founded in 1976, and with over 1 million wearers, Custom Protect Ear is North America’s largest personalized, industrial hearing protector manufacturer. Hearing conservation is our only business. We do not make hearing aid molds or disposable earplugs. This exclusivity allows us to devote all of our research and expertise to the innovation of better hearing protection. As a result, we have made significant technological  advances in the development of superior hearing protection.


For more information please contact us at:

Laura Bennett | Operations Manager
Email: lbennett@protectear.com
Direct: 1.604.635.3250

Summer Hearing

July 1, 2012

Protect Your Hearing This Summer

NOISE TO LOUD Summer activities like concerts, swimming and diving–especially in colder waters, fireworks, and outdoor yard work like mowing can cause damage to the ears and your hearing. In order to protect your ears from permanent damage caused by summer activities, it is important to know what activities to avoid, when to wear protective earplugs, and when to see an audiologist.

Summer Sounds

The average summer sounds: boats, firecrackers and lawnmowers produce decibel levels that can increase or cause hearing loss and tinnitus. Inside the ear are small, delicate hairs that help conduct the noise that constitutes your hearing. Injury to these hair cells comes from exposure, sudden or prolonged, to loud noises like lawnmowers, leaf blowers, and fireworks at close range. Protecting hearing during these activities by wearing protective listening devices can help prevent hearing loss now and into the future.noisy fireworks

Exposure to loud noise can also cause temporary or permanent tinnitus. Tinnitus is defined as a nagging buzzing, whistling, whining, or screeching noise in head or ears that varies in intensity and can be intermittent or constant. Some tinnitus sufferers describe the noise as being as piercing and sharp as the signal used in the emergency broadcast system. An audiologist can create custom made ear protection that allows a person to hear while simultaneously protecting the ears.


Protecting your hearing this summer can be as simple as wearing custom earplugs when mowing, attending concerts, working with machinery or engaging in other noisy activities. Earplugs for water sports and activities can keep water from the ears, protecting your ears while helping to prevent your body reacting to cold water conditions through exotosis. An audiologist can provide custom fit protective molds for your ears. Custom fit means more comfort and a greater chance of use like communication, but that’s not the only reason to see an audiologist.

Regular checkups with your audiologist are as important as regular checkups with your eye doctor. Your sense of hearing is a precious gift that needs to be maintained through proper care and prevention. Summer sounds and activities damage hearing, so take precautions and see an audiologist to head off any hearing health problems before they happen.

Read Full Article: Click Here

Hearing Loss in the Aviation Industry

May 11, 2012

dB Blocker™ Discreet VentedEffects of Noise Exposure

On their website, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) publishes a detailed brochure about hearing and noise in aviation occupations. It explains how the ear works, general types of noise and the effects of noise exposure, both in everyday activities and in the aviation industry in particular.

Written specifically for pilots, the FAA explains that hazardous noise occurs not only on the ground but also in the air. We would expect aircraft equipment, jet efflux, propellers, and rotors to cause noise induced hearing loss, but cabin conditioning and pressurization systems also give off noise that can cause hearing loss with prolonged exposure. Cockpit or cabin noise can be so loud that pilots have to shout to be heard buy inflatable giant water slide. Over time, even cockpit noise can cause hearing impairment.

How can pilots and other aviation workers protect themselves from noise induced hearing loss?

The FAA recommends limiting the duration of exposure to noise, but also recommends insertable-type earplugs. The FAA’s brochure states, “To be effective, earplugs must be inserted properly to create an air-tight seal in the air canal.” Custom Protect Ear’s dB Blockers™ are made to fit the individual’s ear exactly. It’s made of medical grade silicones that are soft and flexible, creating a comfortable, custom fit.

In fact, it’s no secret that we help aviation employees protect themselves from long term hearing loss. Some of our customers are big names in the aviation industry like WestJet, Air Canada, Lockheed Martin, and Boeing. Passengers can also protect themselves from the effects of prolonged exposure to noise when flying across the country. dB Blockers worn on such flights allow those wearing them to arrive much more refreshed and less tired. If you or someone you know works in the aviation industry, share the FAA brochure with them and tell them about CPE’s custom ear protection. We are here to help.

Types of Noise Induced Hearing Problems

April 23, 2012

Types of Noise Induced Hearing Problems

Noise Induced Hearing Loss - How Loud is Too Loud?Noise induced hearing loss (NIHL) can be temporary or permanent, but is always caused by – you guessed it – noise! People with exposure to loud noise can suffer two types of NIHL (temporary NIHL and long-term NIHL). These can be prevented by wearing form fitting ear protection, but once the damage is done, it is usually irreversible. One thing is certain, if you work in noise and YOU don’t take responsibility for protecting your hearing, you will lose some or all of it before you retire.

Temporary NIHL

Temporary noise induced hearing loss occurs when a person is subjected to a sudden, extremely loud noise like a gun shot, explosion or fireworks display. It can also be caused by loud music at a rock concert. The symptoms can include muffled hearing, dizziness, and pain in the ear. The symptoms can last from several hours to several days. While hearing will likely return to normal, the damage usually has been done. In some cases hearing loss will be immediate and permanent .If you are exposed to these sounds often, it will lead to a degree of permanent hearing loss.

Long-term NIHL

Long-term noise induced hearing loss happens when a person has been exposed to continuous loud noises over a long period of time. Often long-term NIHL usually occurs in a noisy workplace environment. Common industries where employees report long-term NIHL are manufacturing, music, mining, transportation, railway and construction. But recreational activities like snowmobiling, mowing the lawn, and woodworking, and even blow drying hair can cause long-term NIHL. Long-term hearing loss symptoms appear gradually. Sounds may be muffled or a person may have trouble hearing in a restaurant or public place with a lot of background noise.

How Can My Hearing Be Protected?

Wearing hearing protection can help but only if it is sufficient for the noise you are in and worn effectively.  While we often can’t control the noise in our environment, we can control how we deal with the noise. We recommend everyone who has frequent exposure to noisy situations, whether on the job or at home, wear custom hearing protection. Sure, we recommend it because we are a hearing protection company, but we also care about everyone’s hearing, and for over 30 years it’s been our goal to help prevent noise induced hearing loss before it’s too late.

Learn More About Custom Hearing Protection for You and Your Company

800-520-0220 or email us below

Contact Us

We would like to hear from you. Please send us a message by filling out the form below and we will get back with you shortly.

(First & Last)