Hearing Protection for Hearing Aids

#1

I am fortunate in that my company will be buying me a pair of decent hearing aids. I’m hoping for Exelia and will know soon. I work in and out of a factory situation throughout the day.
The hearing aids I’ve chosen will be the behind the ear style. What should I do when I enter a factory where the noise can be quite loud? I’d like not to have to take them off and put them back on all the time. Can I wear ear muffs? If so … can you recommend a mfg and make? Has anyone else dealt with this issue?
Appreciate any response.

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#2

What is your hearing loss like - as I’d be interested in what sort of venting you’d use? You could use over the ear hearing protection such as Peltor, but might also be able to get your audi to make to silicon deep impression moulds (no vents and double wall tubing) for the Exelia that you could use in the factory with a comfort in noise program (with much reduced MPO) as a sort of electronic noise protection. This might be a bit fiddly as you’d have to switch your moulds when in the factory and might also make your own voice sound boomy, but the advantage will be you’d be able to hear through your “hearing protection” and loud noises will be reduced. Your audi will need to check maximum output though (aided supra-thresholds or Rem - the latter could leak sound though) before considering this as a viable option that is safe and effective enough to reduce the sounds you might experience in the factory.

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#3

Thanks for responding to my questions. I have to admit I wouldn’t know how to rate my hearing loss. I know that it is serious enough to require a mold even though I am getting a behind the ear hearing aid. It would be incredibly inconvenient to change out molds. I never know when I’ll go out to the factory or for how long. I was hoping I could just get some muffs that would fit over everything even though the aids were behind my ears. I know there are muffs for shooting sports that limit the sound to a certain decible level. I’ll check out the Peltor you mentioned.

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#4

well, I would recomend GN which has the enviromental optimizer (azure silouete or dot)-it has the ability to give me the control to turn up or down the overall gain in up to 7 dif. specific enviroments …

eXELIA is a good instrument… it should also do the trick…

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#5

Are you suggesting I just turn them off and use them like ear plugs? I’m in an airplane assembly factory where the riveting noise can be exceedingly loud.

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#6

Rememer if you plan to use your aids as hearing protection, they should be a tight seal with NO venting otherwise you’ll still suffer noie exposure.

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#7

I am in a similar situation at work where at times I am required to wear hearing protection.

The solution depends on the type and severity of your loss.
My hearing loss is “moderate to severe”.

Here is a statement made by my audiologist to my employer:
“It is unlikely that the hearing loss will deteriorate further from noise exposure, as the hearing thresholds in the higher frequencies are already in the severe degree range, and in actual fact, the conductive component of the hearing loss is actually acting as a natural protective mechanism against further damage to hearing from noise exposure.”

This means that I do not need to wear ear protection if I do not wear my hearing aids. However, as my HAs bring my hearing to a “normal” level, if I do not wear ear protection in the noisy envrironment I can still do further damage to my ears.

I use over the ear muffs (covering my HAs) which dampen the louder sounds in the noisy environment.

Good luck and please let us know how you resolve this issue.

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#8

If you do get Exelia aids, you might want to have your audiologist set up a separate program for the factory. Bring in your earuffs, and have them set the factory program so that there is no feedback with the earmuffs on.

I would hesitate to use the limiting features of the hearing aids as hearing protection. The earmuffs would be uch better. Also, the factory probably has OSHA rules (or similar, if you are in a country other than the US) to comply with.

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#9

most hearing aids now have an stand by option where
the instruments are running but are muted. so when you have the earmuff on
it wouldnt whistle

I believe this is an option which is available in almost any brand right?

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#10

Thanks everyone for your responses. I think the “Standby” mode with ear muffs will be my best bet. Now I need to find a good set of muffs that will fit over the behind the ear aids as well. I don’t think that will be a problem. Once I get my new hearing aids and find muffs that work … I’ll report back.

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#11

Meeting with some friends the subject of hearing arose.
My friend had seen an advt in a regional newspaper , and had taken an offer of a free three month trial of siemens aids.
He was told by the audio NOT to wear the aids during the time he is operating his tractor wearing ear muffs.
My friend has a busy little mowing/slashing business , and so the aids spent mst of their trail period at home in their box.
Needless to say he returned them with a thanks but no thanks comment.
My Aids seem very adept at coping with sudden and/or sustained loud noises and it puzzles my why such advice was given.

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