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Old September 10, 2016, 06:57 AM   #1
Logankeeling98
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Noisy live fire

First off, new to the site, so hope I can be helped by all you knowledgeable people out there.

Question: Everyone obviously trains, and practices (because of safety) with ear protection on, but... in real life, either on the streets or in your home, how do you prepare for the extreme noise difference of multiple rounds being fired, without being overwhelmed and concussed? how would you even begin to train for that?
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Old September 10, 2016, 07:37 AM   #2
Minorcan
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Ear protection like most forms of PPE are worn to prevent damage from chronic exposure to loud (>80 db) noises not for one time short exposure. I use electronic ear muffs while training so they are not practical to wear 100% of the time. I think the way to minimize exposure in a live fire real situation is to not wear hearing protection and to look and listen for trouble and when the shooting starts make your first shot count. That way the loud noises will stop faster so your exposure will be minimized.
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Old September 10, 2016, 07:54 AM   #3
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A suppressor. It's the only means of assuring truely "hearing-safe" gunfire in a real gunfight, at least on your end - and especially if it occurs indoors and there's a rifle involved.

The folks with all these tricked-out, blingy 9"-12" 5.56mm SBRs and NO can attached are going to suffer major auditory damage on the first trigger pull even if they put the bad guy down with that shot.
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Old September 10, 2016, 08:06 AM   #4
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Quote:
A suppressor. It's the only means of assuring truely "hearing-safe" gunfire in a real gunfight
Very few can/ammo combos are "hearing safe".

Im a big supporter/user of suppressed weapons. Even my 300blk shooting subs thru a can is not in the "hearing safe" range.

Would i shoot it without ears in a SD scenario?...absolutely. But, ive done the same with pistols and 556 Rifles before.

A can makes it better, but not silent.
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Old September 10, 2016, 08:06 AM   #5
Reloadron
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If God forbid, I ever need to use a gun in defense of my home rest assured the bang will be the last of my concerns. As a 66 year old male my hearing is not what it once was anyway. During a home invasion hearing protection is not even on my priority list.

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Old September 10, 2016, 08:12 AM   #6
Old Bill Dibble
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There is a thing known as auditory exclusion. In certain high stress situations (such as when someone is actively trying to kill you) your brain shuts down certain perceptions giving you tunnel vision and limit your hearing. This is believed to help trigger the fight or flight responses.

Most people when they hear loud noises their body reacts involuntarily by jerking or covering their ears. If your body is stressed enough it may not recognize the gunfire as being a threat to your hearing while you are shooting as you are focused on dealing with the greater threat of someone trying to kill you.
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Old September 10, 2016, 08:21 AM   #7
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Gotta' think the risk of hearing damage would be of minimum concern in the middle of an actual gunfight.
The closest I've ever come to experiencing it was losing my ear protection in the beginning of an action pistol stage.
I only heard the first round.
After that it was like the ear protection was still in place.
Except for the ringing and clogged up hearing for the rest of the day.
By the next day, all was well again, with no obvious after effects.
We mere humans are tougher than some folks expect.
Eh, what's that?
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Old September 10, 2016, 08:24 AM   #8
Logankeeling98
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thank you to everyone that responded
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Old September 10, 2016, 09:03 AM   #9
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Quote:
There is a thing known as auditory exclusion. In certain high stress situations (such as when someone is actively trying to kill you) your brain shuts down certain perceptions giving you tunnel vision and limit your hearing. This is believed to help trigger the fight or flight responses.
Auditory exclusion does NOT prevent permanent hearing loss from exposure to gunshots. It only takes one round to possibly leave you permanently deaf.
Keep a pair of electronic muffs by the bed. They can be turned UP to give you even better hearing than what you have.
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Old September 10, 2016, 09:14 AM   #10
DukeConnor
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I solved the problem. My solution was to spend 12 years in a field artillery battery, and 25 years in heavy construction and fab shops.

It works for me but I wouldn't recomend it.
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Old September 10, 2016, 10:47 AM   #11
g.willikers
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It only takes one round to possibly leave you permanently deaf.
I recently had a hearing test, and except for the high frequencies of chipmunk chatter and teeny bopper receptionists, I passed with high marks.
And that's in spite of over thirty years of loud motorcycles and racing engines, further aggravated by the constant barrage of power tools in small garages.
Plus all the years of gunfire without much in the way of hearing protection.
We are much more resilient than that.
From my own experience, you will not likely come to serious grief for the few rounds you might fire in your house.
Unless you happen to shoot yourself.
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Old September 10, 2016, 02:25 PM   #12
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g.willikers it 'sounds' like you are one of the lucky ones who are somehow less vulnerable to hearing loss from loud noises. Just like the guy who smoked 3 packs a day for 70 years and dies in a motorcycle crash, that is the exception and not the rule. Irreversible and profound hearing loss can happen from one exposure to excessive noise. For most of us it will happen with repeated exposure. I think FITASC's solution of having a pair of electronic muffs by the bed is a good one. I also think suppressed is a good idea, but it is not legal in my state.
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Old September 10, 2016, 02:45 PM   #13
Old Bill Dibble
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Auditory exclusion does NOT prevent permanent hearing loss from exposure to gunshots. It only takes one round to possibly leave you permanently deaf.
True enough but that was not the OP's question.

Would that I could pick the time and place of when I next hear shots being fired.
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Old September 10, 2016, 04:23 PM   #14
FITASC
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And if it is in your house, you CAN put the muffs on and turn them as fast as you can take the safety off your gun
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Old September 10, 2016, 05:20 PM   #15
Old Bill Dibble
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If I am in my house I won't need ear muffs.

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Old September 10, 2016, 05:33 PM   #16
FITASC
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Until they start coming in the windows, doors, etc..............
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Old September 10, 2016, 06:44 PM   #17
Dusty Rivers
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electronic muffs by the bed

"Keep a pair of electronic muffs by the bed. They can be turned UP to give you even better hearing than what you have. "

Excellent advice, along with a flashlight.
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Old September 10, 2016, 07:09 PM   #18
Old Bill Dibble
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Until they start coming in the windows, doors, etc..............
I still won't need them. That is the point of going suppressed.
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Old September 10, 2016, 07:37 PM   #19
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We are much more resilient than that.
You may be, but I, most assuredly am not. It only took a couple of shots with no hearing protection (one in particular) to leave me with very noticeable hearing loss in my left ear.

I don't know why some people seem to have more durable hearing equipment than others, but it's not wise to assume that everyone is the same in that respect.
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I still won't need them. That is the point of going suppressed.
Crooks in your area must be very considerate. In this area they very rarely use suppressed weapons.
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Old September 10, 2016, 10:02 PM   #20
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Sorry, Old Bill, you can close your eyes to a bright light, but you can't close your ears. Loud noises can and will damage your hearing no matter what kind of "auditory exclusion" you think takes place by magic. You may think you don't hear the noise but your ears do. As to suppressors, the paperwork and cost make them uncommon (how many do you own?), plus impossible to use with common holsters.

And the idea of stopping a gun fight to put on hearing protection is a bit amusing, and not very realistic.

I knew a police officer who fired a hot-loaded .357 in a narrow alley and suffered both temporary pain and long-term hearing loss from one shot. With brick walls 8 feet apart there is no way to escape hearing damage. There are types of hearing protection that would work but not without blocking some of the normal hearing, not a good idea for a police officer, as well as being awkward and uncomfortable.

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Old September 10, 2016, 11:04 PM   #21
boondocker385
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Some interesting comments by staff lately with nothing to back them up. Read on combat by David Grossman for more information (that is factual)Also several years ago the VA did a study on hearing loss from small arms fire in combat at that it really varied.
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Old September 11, 2016, 03:05 AM   #22
Old Bill Dibble
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Sorry, Old Bill, you can close your eyes to a bright light, but you can't close your ears. Loud noises can and will damage your hearing no matter what kind of "auditory exclusion" you think takes place by magic. You may think you don't hear the noise but your ears do. As to suppressors, the paperwork and cost make them uncommon (how many do you own?), plus impossible to use with common holsters.
I guess I can repeat myself. The auditory exclusion in no way limits hearing damage. What it does is allows you to fight without instinctively trying to protect your hearing.

The OP was asking how to prepare for it without being overwhelmed, presumably when the time comes. What I am saying is that you don't necessarily need to. Practically anyone that has been a short fire fight can tell you that hearing is the least of concerns. If it goes on for a longer period of time people start putting in hearing protection as they suddenly "notice" the gunfire after the initial adrenal dump wears off.

Suppressors are not that unusual in my part of the world. They are increasing in popularity as the price comes down. I know a number of people who own them.
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Old September 11, 2016, 05:52 AM   #23
agtman
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Look, handguns fired indoors are one thing. A rifle being fired inside a walled structure is quite another. You WILL absolutely suffer hearing loss (partial and permanent), receive concussive blast, and become disorientated (at least momentarily).

The worst auditory damage will result from the firing of a short-barrelled unsupressed 5.56 rifle.

Taking a quick time-out to chased down ear muffs before engaging the bad guy(s) breaking into your house is a joke, something a gunshop commando would advise.

If you choose to use a 5.56 AR as your go-to home defense/night-stand weapon, and you anticipate scenarios where you'd actually be firing it inside, get a can for it.

Or, get a 12-gauge. Yeah, it's blasty too, but indoors an unsuppressed 5.56 is much, much worse.
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Old September 11, 2016, 06:40 AM   #24
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Taking a quick time-out to chased down ear muffs before engaging the bad guy(s) breaking into your house is a joke, something a gunshop commando would advise.
Agreed. Taking a quick timeout to chase anything down in a self-defense encounter isn't wise.

However, having good quality electronic muffs by the bed with your nightstand gun and flashlight isn't such a bad idea. If you have time to put them on, they will be an asset since not only do they protect your ears, they can be turned up to provide superhuman hearing abilities. If there's no time to put them on, you're no worse off for having them available.
Quote:
If you choose to use a 5.56 AR as your go-to home defense/night-stand weapon, and you anticipate scenarios where you'd actually be firing it inside, get a can for it.
I'm not arguing against suppressors for home defense (at least in firearms where their use doesn't have any negative effect on function--it's pretty obviously a really bad idea to use them if they decrease reliability as can happen in some cases), but they don't solve the problem completely.

Unless all home invaders are courteous enough to use suppressors, your suppressor only solves half the problem.
Quote:
I knew a police officer who fired a hot-loaded .357 in a narrow alley and suffered both temporary pain and long-term hearing loss from one shot.
A friend of mine is married to a police officer who is pretty badly hearing impaired as the result of a single shot of .38spl fired by a criminal and a single .357Mag round fired back that ended the attack.
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Old September 11, 2016, 06:52 AM   #25
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Someone already mentioned it but if God forbid if you had to defend yourself, home, family your hearing is the last thing you will be concerned about.
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