Firefighters and police officers risk their lives every day. But their hearing is also in danger. They face a greater risk for long-term hearing loss than others.
Gunfire, traffic, radio systems, and sirens can all damage the hearing of police officers, especially over time. Wearing proper ear protection during training is essential. Not wearing it may be the reason why their hearing loss is greater. Time spent at the gun range is particularly risky for hearing loss without hearing protection. One study found that more than 30 percent of police officers have hearing loss compared to about 15 percent of American adults in general.
Fans used to remove smoke, power tools that cut metal, sirens, radios from fire trucks, and air horns all pose a risk to the hearing of firefighters. Consistently wearing hearing protection helps. Also, changing the placement of sirens on fire trucks makes a difference.
Obviously, firefighters and police officers can’t wear hearing protection all the time because of critical issues like high pressure, emergency situations. But minimizing the risk of hearing loss whenever possible is key.
If you have hearing loss from your job and want additional information, please contact a hearing instrument specialist at Pure Sound Hearing Aids.