When people visit their audiologist with symptoms of hearing loss it can commonly be attributed to exposure to excessive noise. What is even more worrying is that more often than not the exposure has occurred in the workplace.

As more research and understanding regarding the connection between excessive volume and hearing loss has been better understood, steps have been taken to reduce the risk of noise-induced hearing loss in the workplace. In fact, it is now a legal requirement in many workplaces for workers to wear ear protection.

Further, even in professions where the law does not require ear protection many professionals and industry associations will highly recommend, if not require it. Simply put, wearing the correct hearing protection is one of the most important things you can do to protect yourself from the consequences of sound exposure.

Below, is a list of professions that all vary widely in terms of duties and the nature of work, but all have one thing in common. They all carry an underlying risk to workers’ hearing, to the extent that the use of hearing protection is required.


Construction sites are one of the most common environments in which hearing protection is worn. The noise levels arising out of a construction site are well understood, you only have to walk past a site to experience the noise – and that is from a distance. The constant use of power tools, such as drills, saws and heavy machinery can see noise levels exceeding well over 130 decibels (dBs). This is at least 50dBs over the recommended safety threshold and could result in serious harm to your hearing if adequate protection is not worn.


Asking a musician to wear hearing protection can be met with some resistance. Of course, being able to hear and experience the music is vital for a musician and they are uninclined to muffle or reduce the sound of the music in which they create. That said, for musicians playing in large venues or using loudspeakers the risk of impairing their hearing is very real.

Exposure to this level of sound for a protracted period is likely to impact anyone’s ability to hear. The good news is hearing protection can be very sophisticated and it is possible to find a solution for musicians to protect their ears and still hear the music they are playing. Seeking professional advice from an audiologist is always recommended to help direct musicians on the correct course of action.

Airport workers

Working outside on an airfield will expose workers to very loud volumes and wearing hearing protection is essential. Airfields can be one of the loudest environments to work in with jet planes reaching up to 140 decibels. As such roles such as baggage handlers, mechanics and fuelers will be required to wear hearing protection as part of their employment. This will be a legal and contractual requirement in countries around the world as failure to do so will considerably affect their ability to hear.

For help choosing the proper hearing protection products for your needs, give one of our offices a call, and we’ll be happy to walk you through the process.

  • Campbell River, BC: (778) 560-3112
  • Comox, BC: (778) 560-3103
  • Coquitlam, BC: (604) 283-4430
  • Duncan, BC: (778) 410-2166
  • Nanaimo, BC: (778) 410-2529
  • Powell River, BC: (778) 410-2167
  • Sidney, BC: (778) 410-2536
  • Victoria, BC: (778) 557-1704

Tags: hearing loss prevention, occupational hearing loss