Anyone else have damaged hearing? - Chicagoland Sportbikes
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post #1 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-06-2007, 09:56 AM Thread Starter
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Anyone else have damaged hearing?

Do you wear ear plugs when you ride? Did you or do you have a hard time wearing them because it effects your equilibrium? I don't think wearing them effects my balance but it does effect me hearing the motor on my bike and that in turn effects my riding performance. My hearing seams to really be taking a beating. The ambient noise in the factory I work at is around 50 or 60 db. Going to loud concerts lately I have really noticed my hearing being screwed up. Sometimes it actually hurts and I can not enjoy the show. I can not go to a concert from now on unless I bring ear plugs, it is that bad. The company I work for is conducting OSHA required hearing tests this week. My test is at 9:30 this morning. They don't want us to be exposed to work environment noise 14 hours prior to the test so I am sitting here at my desk wearing ear plugs. It is definitely something to get used to and I am not. I wonder how deaf I really am. I'm sure working on and designing equipment for outdoor and indoor warning siren systems for almost the last 8 years hasn't help my hearing much either.

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post #2 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-06-2007, 10:02 AM
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My ears are terrible, although I have started to wear ear plugs on long rides. Mine ring constantly.




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post #3 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-06-2007, 10:09 AM Thread Starter
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Wearing ear plugs heighten my awareness that my hearing is damaged. I am actually sitting here listening to my ears ring. I really need to wear ear plugs from now on when riding and at concerts.

A friend of mine has a new Harley Nightrod and he has the loudest exhaust I have ever heard on a motorcycle. It's a 2 into one into a megaphone thats about 6 inches in diameter. I can't not ride behind him because one: I can hear my motorcycle AT ALL and because it shatters my ear drums. I told him I am not riding with him again until he gets a different exhaust.

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post #4 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-06-2007, 10:11 AM
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I have tinnitus too. worse in my left ear. Its from shooting. I actually remember the day that it happened. I was deaf in that ear for a few days and never came back completely.

If I knew then what I know now...

Mine both ring 24/7

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post #5 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-06-2007, 10:13 AM
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Some of this ( sensitivity ) comes with age.


The ringing in your ears is tinnitus ... this is caused by sustained exposure
to loud noises. Each time you have that sensation you have sustained a
small amount of permanent hearing damage.


If you ride a V-Twin with loud pipes ( Tony and Nick both do ) it is imperative
that you find hearing protection that you are comfortable with.

From a racetrack POV..... I find it very fatiguing to ride WITHOUT hearing
protection and wear earplugs all the time. It allows me to focus on the
things that are important and limits the distraction of blocking out all
the odd aural interruptions.


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post #6 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-06-2007, 10:14 AM Thread Starter
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Oh yea, I forgot about shooting and hunting. I only go a few times a year but the last couple times I popped off the old 12 gauge Remmington I thought my ear drum was going to fall out of my head.

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post #7 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-06-2007, 10:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2weelpilot View Post
I have tinnitus too. worse in my left ear. Its from shooting. I actually remember the day that it happened. I was deaf in that ear for a few days and never came back completely.

If I knew then what I know now...

Mine both ring 24/7
Man, I shot a bunch this weekend and actually thought I might have blown my left ear drum. Why is it that, even though I shoot with the gun closer to my right ear, it's always my left ear that is killing me afterwards. I'm going to start using a foam plug/Ear muff combo b/c I don't want to damage my hearing any more than I already have.

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post #8 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-06-2007, 10:16 AM
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I had a brain tumor, and in removing said tumor, my right hearing nerve that attaches to the brain stem was removed. I lost all equilibrium for about a year and had to learn to walk again, ice skate, ride a bike etc. My brain was looking for a signal from my right ear and there was none. Consequently, over time, my brain adjusted by using my eyes for balance inputs. When my eyes are closed, I get dizzy immediately. I guess what I am saying is protect what hearing you have left if ya can- use the earplugs- in time you will get used to them and your equilibrium issues will go away.

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post #9 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-06-2007, 10:16 AM
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post #10 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-06-2007, 10:17 AM Thread Starter
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Do any of you guys have prescription ear plugs from your doctor? I really need to look into this. The cheap foam ones never seam to fit inside my helmet rite. I get my helmet on and they move or pop out everytime.

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post #11 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-06-2007, 10:20 AM
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I have to have my hearing tested every three years for my locomotive license. I have had a significant hearing loss in my left ear. Mainly because the radios on locomotives are on the left side, and when I work a remote locomotive job, the wired mic is on my left side. I just saw my audio doctor, and he is rec fitted earplugs for work and riding. Nick, go to a good ear nose throat guy, and have then remove wax in your ears. Will not help with the ringing, but might make it a bit easier to hear.

*edit* I was talking to some people at work that said this id free from work, I will find out more today. If not, I have an appt with the doctor on the 8th.
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post #12 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-06-2007, 10:24 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave13 View Post
I have to have my hearing tested every three years for my locomotive license. I have had a significant hearing loss in my left ear. Mainly because the radios on locomotives are on the left side, and when I work a remote locomotive job, the wired mic is on my left side. I just saw my audio doctor, and he is rec fitted earplugs for work and riding. Nick, go to a good ear nose throat guy, and have then remove wax in your ears. Will not help with the ringing, but might make it a bit easier to hear.

*edit* I was talking to some people at work that said this id free from work, I will find out more today. If not, I have an appt with the doctor on the 8th.

Hey man, I have good high gene and I clean my ears every day with cue tips.

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post #13 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-06-2007, 10:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grasshopper View Post
Do any of you guys have prescription ear plugs from your doctor? I really need to look into this. The cheap foam ones never seam to fit inside my helmet rite. I get my helmet on and they move or pop out everytime.

Youre probably not putting them in correctly, when properly inserted they dont stick out and wouldnt move when putting on or removing your helmet. Squeeze them small , take your opposite hand, put it behind your head, gab the top of your ear and pull it up and back (This will staighten the ear canal) insert the compressed foam plug, then hold the ear like that until the foam expands and fills the ear canal.

CHECK THIS!http://www.uwm.edu/Dept/EHSRM/IEH/NO...amEarplugs.pdf

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post #14 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-06-2007, 10:28 AM
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I just started wearing plugs on the track, i dont think ill ever go back to not wearing them now. It was an adjustment at first to get used to them and listen to the bike differently but its a quick learning process. Yesterday I had one of the cheap foam ear plugs fall out in the helmet, and with one ear plugged and the other not that really messed with my head, I had to pull off and stick it back in.
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post #15 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-06-2007, 10:29 AM
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You are packing your ears with wax where the q-tip will not reach. Trust me on this one. When they pull a pack of wax the size of a sunflower seed or a grape, you will understand. You can be very hygenic and still have this problem.
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post #16 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-06-2007, 10:35 AM
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Dated a drummer in an indie-punk band when I lived in Minneapolis, so I followed them around on tour for a summer in my stupid early 20's and bingo - tinnitus. It was super fun, but I wish I'd have worn ear plugs more often.

It's a bummer because I cannot truly enjoy quiet places. Always have to have some kind of white noise background. It also drowns out the other voices in my head. :P

I have a hard time wearing earplugs, and should really be fitted with custom ones. I have tiny, sensitive, ear-holes and even the smallest foam expanding plugs are killing me after a couple hours. Last year I rode a Duc Monster with old D&D pipes to Georgia, and I suffered with the pain 'cos the bike was so damn loud.

Fortunately I don't feel as though I've suffered much hearing *loss* though. At least not that's noticeable. My eyes are going though for sure, I hate that. Stupid computer job making me nearsighted.

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post #17 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-06-2007, 10:35 AM
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post #18 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-06-2007, 10:48 AM
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Well, as someone who attended dozens of heavy metal shows, worked as a bouncer for 2 years and rode helmet-less for 20+ years with no hearing proection, I now wear digital hearing aids FULL-TIME. Of course, it only took me 20 years to get over my vanity and saying "huh?" all the time to accept it. And you know what? its the best f'in decision I ever made. (cuz chicks dig guys who actually listen! )

Anyhow, I can vouch for the fact that a few simple protective measures will help save your hearing.

I highly recommend http://www.etymotic.com/ephp/er20.aspx for their earplugs. Best $15 you'll ever spend.

Either that, or you can budget $6,000 for these: http://www.widexusa.com .

Its your call.

Of course, when I'm at a loud bar or show I simply take out my 'bionic ears' cuz I can hear everything fine! And, I sleep like a rock at night, not hearing anything!

Seriously, any questions about hearing-related loss should go see a professional: I recommend http://www.nwhearing.com/

Last edited by crashomon; 08-06-2007 at 10:50 AM.
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post #19 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-06-2007, 10:49 AM
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I just posted a few weeks ago about the same type of hearing loss from my SV.

I was tested a couple weeks back, and I have some perm hearing loss in my left ear around 8K. They didn't do a full spectrum test, but I have a feeling there is a lot of loss higher up.

I used to have *really* good hearing. I could hear the "shadow" of cats walking in front of speakers or the change in tone of the music when someone opens up a door or window in the house.

Now...I really doubt I'd notice a difference between $200 speakers and $50,000 speakers. LOL

Note: You can get ear plugs that only drop the volume by 25db. You'll still be able to hear the SV and traffic and whatnot, but it will "take the edge off" and bring the overall volume down below damaging point.

I bought a variety pack from http://earplugstore.stores.yahoo.net/ to get an idea of what plugs work well, can be inserted quickly (people don't like waiting for me to gear up), and are comfortable. I have a couple picked out that I think I'm going to buy in bulk. The variety pack was only $15 plus shipping: http://earplugstore.stores.yahoo.net/trialasandki.html

I think I'm going to try the reusable earplug variety pack next.

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post #20 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-06-2007, 10:59 AM

 
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A few of us got these at the IMS this winter. I don't wear mine as much as I should. They are molded for your ear. They will even keep your ear mold "on file." So if you need a new one, they will make one and send it out.

Since they are made for your ear, they are very comfortable. I also like to hear my bikes engine and other bikes as well. Though when I have them in, I'm so much more focused.

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post #21 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-06-2007, 11:04 AM
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I worked in a cabinet shop for about a year and a half, and got used to the cheap assed ones they had there. You will get used to them, but if you only wear them once a month they will hurt every time.

I think I'll start wearing them when I ride. I never have, but I'm sure it's a good idea.
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post #22 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-06-2007, 11:09 AM
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I'm supposed to wear double hearing protection at work (ear plugs + mickey mouse ears). Unfortunately, most of the time I only wear the mickey mouse ears, since they are so much easier to put on/off... Unless I know I'm going on the flight line for extended period of time, I don't put the ear plugs in. I really should though.
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post #23 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-06-2007, 11:10 AM
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^^^^
We are suppost to wear double when we are around car retarders, good luck finding those.
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post #24 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-06-2007, 11:11 AM Thread Starter
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Just got done with the test. I have considerable hearing lose in my left ear around 4k.

Time to start taking the proper precautions.

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post #25 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-06-2007, 11:12 AM
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Did they check for ear wax also?
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post #26 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-06-2007, 11:14 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
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Did they check for ear wax also?
No, I'm going to make a doctor appointment to get my ears completely checked out.

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post #27 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-06-2007, 11:24 AM
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Jay, I'm finding the "push in" kind of ear plugs really quick and easy to put in. I'm trying out two different foam kinds right now, and looking for more to try out. They basically have a plastic rod through them that you don't (shouldn't) feel after the foam expands.

Quick and easy.

These are the ones I like so far:

http://earplugstore.stores.yahoo.net/epuwigrridif.html

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post #28 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-06-2007, 11:31 AM
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If you want disposable (ew... ear wax!) I prefer these. 30db reduction and comfy...

http://tinyurl.com/2n3wnj

I don't use them for riding though.. but do sleep like a baby...

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post #29 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-06-2007, 11:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grasshopper View Post
No, I'm going to make a doctor appointment to get my ears completely checked out.
I need to get back to my doctor and have him refer me to Ear specialist for a more thorough checkup.

Hey Grasshopper, here are some ear plugs for you!

http://earplugstore.stores.yahoo.net/heslprinpi.html

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post #30 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-06-2007, 11:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grasshopper View Post
Wearing ear plugs heighten my awareness that my hearing is damaged. I am actually sitting here listening to my ears ring. I really need to wear ear plugs from now on when riding and at concerts.

A friend of mine has a new Harley Nightrod and he has the loudest exhaust I have ever heard on a motorcycle. It's a 2 into one into a megaphone thats about 6 inches in diameter. I can't not ride behind him because one: I can hear my motorcycle AT ALL and because it shatters my ear drums. I told him I am not riding with him again until he gets a different exhaust.
I use to work at a sand & gravel quarry and MSHA would require hearing tests every 6 months. One of the guys that worked in the Crusher House was having a significant drop in hearing throughout the tests and was threatening a law suit against the quarry. They got him prescription ear plugs, made him wear those headphone looking things on top of those, and gave him a sound dampened room to work from. His hearing was still going down.

They then gave him a decibal meter to wear while at work. It didn't show any reason why his hearing was going down, so he still threatened to sue. They made him wear it 24/7 for a week and it turns out his Harley had pipes on it that were louder than if you were to sit right in front of a speaker at a heavy metal concert. I can't remember the decibal rating, but it was just wrong (140+ at least). Needless to say, he dropped his lawsuit.
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