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Old March 19, 2013, 01:41 PM   #126
Join Date: March 26, 2006
Posts: 26
There is no reason to ever not wear hearing protection while practicing. There is a phenomenon known as "auditory exclusion," where in a stressful situation you do not hear the shots.

I wear custom ear plugs from the doctors office and the highest NNR muff I can find. Exposure to noise is like radiation, cumulative gradual reduction in hearing ability. The sound scale is logarithmic so a NRR 28 muff will protect substantially less than an NRR 29 muff. When you get your ear plug molds make sure to open your mouth and move around your jaw, it seems to make for a better earplug. I can hear a lot of things pretty well with the custom plugs inserted even though they have an NRR of 29 or so, it takes a plug and a muff to really silence things.

I have permanent tinnitus in my ears from shooting 5.56 as a teenager and thinking that I needed to get my ears "used" to the sound so my reaction would be more effective in a defensive situation.

Take care of your ears, hearing protection is a lot cheaper than dealing with the intricacies of hearing aids.

This ear plug from the doctors office:

I cannot find the direct link but I use a style 40 NRR 29.

I use a Peltor H10A for comfortable high NRR:

Some flavor of a this sort of muff is invaluable for shooting classes:

Please note, that when getting a noise cancelling muff to look at the maximum NRR because that will be the maximum noise reduction limit of the muff. If you are in a rifle class next to other people's muzzles and muzzle breaks you will need all the NRR you can possibly stand.
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Old March 19, 2013, 02:17 PM   #127
Join Date: February 23, 2012
Location: North Carolina
Posts: 20
My dad started taking me duck hunting when I was 8. That was around 1968. We did not wear any hearing protection back then . Never heard of anyone wearing it for hunting until many years later. I did not go to an official range to shoot until I was much older and hearing protection was the norm.
I always wear plugs and/or good muffs now. Gotta protect those ears. Only have the two.
I have been playing drums since I was 7. There has been a little damage done from that and the cymbals and playing in bands. I have been using ear plugs for that also for many years.
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Old March 19, 2013, 02:44 PM   #128
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Join Date: November 8, 2004
Location: Pierce County, WA
Posts: 2,453
Re: Shooting a gun without ear protection

FYI, hearing protection is mandatory in almost all military units these days for patrols outside the FOBs. And yes, IEDs are loud.
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Old March 31, 2013, 10:00 AM   #129
Join Date: January 17, 2013
Posts: 38
Never leave home without it.

I forgot to put my hear protection on after talking to friends at an outside range with a roof above the ports. I found out really quick how loud a .357 mag really is. My ears were ringing and had trouble hearing the rest of the day.
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Old March 31, 2013, 10:23 AM   #130
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Join Date: March 30, 2013
Location: Colorado
Posts: 320
I have shot 50rds of 357 without protection so I wouldn't be surprised or shocked if I had to shoot without ear protection. Made my ears ring for a day or 2 nothing permanent.

I go hunting without ear protection and shoot 308 and other large guns don't really notice until the adrenaline wears off a little ringing.

I have meet a few old timers mostly deaf that blame it on shooting with no protection, I guess back in the day ear muffs were not that popular.
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Old March 31, 2013, 04:11 PM   #131
Glenn E. Meyer
Join Date: November 17, 2000
Posts: 18,724
You have no idea if you did permanent damage. This is the kind of response which indicates a lack of knowledge. They occur over and over whenever this topic comes up.

There is no need to repeat inaccurate blather.

Thus, closed.
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