Most farms are noisy places. Maybe you don’t notice anymore. Could be your hearing’s not as good as it used to be. Wonder why? Look around your farm workplace.
Got an auger, a mower, animals, a chainsaw, a tractor? Chances are you’re exposed to noise levels everyday that could damage your hearing. Think about it. If you need to shout to talk to someone three feet away, you need hearing protection. Sure, your ears will recover from the occasional loud noise but exposing yourself to a lot of noise day after day will cause hearing loss. So do something about it. Now.
Ears come in all shapes and sizes. The right hearing protector should feel comfortable in the ear or on the head. That means different products for different people. For long-term wear, choose single-use or multiple-use earplugs. For exposure to intermittent noise, choose banded earplugs that can be inserted and removed as needed. Those plugs might feel a bit strange at first but keep at it. To get rid of “tightness” in your ear canal, use low-pressure foam earplugs that expand gently to create a seal. If you find it tough to insert foam earplugs, use no-roll or multiple-use earplugs that do not require rolling prior to insertion.
If you know you’re going to be exposed to loud noises all day, look at lightweight earmuffs such as headband, folding or cap-mounted earmuffs. This summer, add extra pads to absorb perspiration. If you’re wearing a hard hat, faceshield, welding helmet or respirator, use cap-mounted, multiple-position or neckband earmuffs that can be worn with other personal protective equipment (PPE) without compromising noise protection. Hey, you’re worth it! For more tips on protecting your hearing on the farm, check out www.casa-acsa.ca.
Thanks to the Canadian Agricultural Safety Association for providing this farm safety tip. Look for another tip in your next Grainews.