Gun Safety: Why Should You Use Ear Protection When Shooting a Firearm?

Just one gunshot can permanently damage your hearing and repeated exposure increases the risk of hearing loss.Chevron Down

Why Should You Use Ear Protection When Shooting a Firearm
Why Should You Use Ear Protection When Shooting a Firearm

Do you like target shooting? If so, it's crucial to realize how important it is to protect your ears. A gunshot can produce sound levels between 140 and 175 dB, which are so high they can harm your hearing permanently! For instance, a .22 caliber rifle produces a sound level of deafening 120 - 140 dB - louder than a pneumatic drill or even a jet engine. So, let's give a thorough answer to 'why should you use ear protection when shooting a firearm'.

Why Should You Use Ear Protection When Shooting a Firearm?

Some of the questions we'll be answering are:

  • What is the recommended DB gun range hearing protection?
  • Is NRR 25 good for shooting?
  • What Types of Hearing Protectors Should I Use When Shooting a Firearm?
  • What Are Some Tips for Using Hearing Protection While Shooting a Firearm?

Why Should You Use Ear Protection When Shooting a Firearm - Gunfire is Dangerous to Unprotected Ears

Gunshot noise can cause permanent hearing damage. When the sound from a gunshot pierces your eardrums, it can cause deafness.

How many dB is a gunshot?

Oh boy, you're asking a noisy question (pun intended)! A gunshot can pack quite the punch, decibel-wise. On average, a handgun can blast a noise level of 140-165 decibels, while a rifle can go even higher, ringing in at 160-190 decibels. Remember, anything above 140 decibels can cause permanent hearing injury, so it's best to wear protective gear when shooting off rounds.

What is the recommended dB for shooting ear protection?

The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) recommends using hearing protection for shooting at 85 DB or higher. Therefore, if the sound produced by your firearm exceeds 85 dB, it is advisable to utilize hearing protectors.

Is NRR 25 good enough for shooting?

Let's get straight to the point - no, NRR 25 is not good enough for shooting. The American National Standards Institute (ANSI) suggests using a minimum of NRR 28 or higher protection for shooting. This equates to ear protection providing at least 28 decibels of noise reduction.

Is NRR 25 good enough for shooting?

Are Your Ears Ringing After Shooting?

Has the sound of a gunshot left your ears ringing? It's not unusual to experience temporary hearing loss from exposure to loud noises like a gunshot. This ear-busting experience is called acoustic trauma, which can happen in one (shooting ear) or both ears. Symptoms may include ringing in the ears, muffled hearing, dizziness, and balance problems. Keep this in mind the next time you ask yourself: 'why should you use ear protection when shooting a firearm?'.

Are you ears ringing after shooting?

If you currently suffer from these symptoms after exposure to loud noise, don't play it by ear. Get yourself to a healthcare professional who will give you the third degree, perform a physical exam, and take your medical history. They may even order an audiogram or MRI to determine the full extent of the damage.

Dealing with acoustic trauma pronto prevents long-term hearing loss or other complications. Treatment options range from anti-inflammatory meds to sound therapy, which helps the brain get a better grip on sound.

To keep your hearing in good shape:

  • Play it safe - always wear hearing protectors when facing loud noises, and try not to overdo it during exposure.
  • Remember, you can't unhear what you've already heard, but you can hear less of it in the future!

Different Hearing Protection Types

When it comes to protecting your ears, you've got more choices than a kid in a candy store! Earplugs, earmuffs, electronic, non-electronic, over-ear, in-ear - the list goes on and on. Let's break down these different hearing protection types, shall we?

Earplugs: The Pocket-Size Hearing Heroes

What do shooting sports, sleep, and travel have in common? Well, besides being three things that can keep you up all night, they all require protection for your hearing.

Earplugs are tiny but mighty protectors of your precious hearing. They may be small, but they pack a powerful punch when blocking out dangerous noise levels. They're also discreet and easy to carry around, making them the perfect pocket-sized protection for all your shooting sports needs. Whether these are normal or molded earplugs, don't underestimate these little guys - they may save your hearing!

pink safety earplugs

TradeSmart has got you covered with their earplugs for shooting. These keep your ears safe when at the shooting range and provide comfort during slumber and long-haul trips. Made from soft BASF Germany quality foam, these earplugs are like little fluffy clouds for your ears.

With an NRR 33 rating, you'll have adequate hearing protection to enjoy life's noisy adventures. And with 200 pairs individually packed, you'll have plenty to share with your shooting squad. Plus, they're ANSI certified, so you can trust that these earplugs have your back (or should we say your ears?).

Shooting Earmuffs: Block Out the Noise, Without Blocking Out the Fun

Ah, the good old safety earmuffs - the reliable shield against noisy chaos. No need to fiddle around with inserting anything; pop them on, and voila! You're transported to a land of serene, peaceful quietness (or at least reduced noise levels).

With their robust design and snug fit, earmuffs offer a different type of protection than their earplug counterparts. So, whether you're at the shooting range, mowing the lawn, or just trying to get some peace and quiet, earmuffs have got you covered - literally!

safety earmuffs in five different colors

Who says you can't look stylish while protecting your ears? TradeSmart's safety earmuffs not only keep your eardrums safe from the screeching sounds of the world but also make you look like a total pro while doing it. Plus, they fit like a glove with safety glasses so that you can protect your peepers too! Included with anti-fog safety glasses and shooting earplugs, you can discover them in an Essential, Professional, or Premium package.

And with their flexible design, you won't have to worry about head-squeezing discomfort during those extended shooting sessions. With a 6-layer noise reduction system and an NRR 28 rating, these earmuffs are the ultimate protection for your ears. And let's not forget that they're ANSI rated and US-certified, so you know you're getting top-quality protection!

Electronic Earmuffs: A Sound Investment for Your Ears and Sanity

Electronic earmuffs offer a unique solution to the problem of loud noise exposure. With their ability to dampen dangerous noise levels while allowing the wearer to hear what's happening around them, they're ideal for those who need to stay alert and aware while protecting their hearing.

This feature makes them an excellent choice for a wide range of activities, from shooting and hunting to construction and industrial work.

Keep this on the down-low, but word on the street is that TradeSmart is about to drop some electronic earmuffs that'll blow your socks off. Shh, don't spill the beans to anyone. It's our little secret.

Why Should You Use Ear Protection When Shooting a Firearm - Pro Tip

Are you looking for a surefire way to get the best hearing protection from dangerous noise levels? Look no further than TradeSmart's earplug and earmuff combo! With this incredible combination, you'll achieve the highest Noise Reduction Rating (NRR) possible. The earplugs alone provide an NRR of 33; when combined with the earmuffs (NRR 28), you'll be able to reduce noise levels up to 38!

shooting earmuffs and earplugs

Tips for Using Hearing Protection While Shooting a Firearm

Here are a few tips on protecting your ears while shooting a firearm.

1. Make sure you have the right type of protection. Various options are available, from ear muffs to ear plugs, and each has advantages.

2. Check your fit. Ensure the hearing protection for shooting is snug against your ears and won't slip off during use.

3. Practice good communication etiquette. When shooting with others, be sure to yell "fire in the hole" before pulling the trigger so everyone can protect their ears.


Shooting sports can be an exhilarating and fun experience, but without proper protection, it can quickly become a hearing-damaging nightmare. One shot can send your eardrums on a one-way trip to Ringingville, and repeated exposure can lead to permanent damage.

But don't throw in the towel just yet, because there's an easy solution to this ear-splitting problem: proper hearing protection. In the end, choosing suitable safety measures is a small price to pay for the priceless value of your hearing health.

Don't let a temporary rush of excitement take away from precious moments with your family or rob you of the sounds of laughter and love. So, shoot smart, and protect your ears for a lifetime of cherished moments with the ones you love.

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