Ears Hearing

What Are Ear Plugs?

Where do they come from?

Earplugs are placed in the ear canal to block out too much noise or to avoid water, filth or foreign bodies from entering the ear. But where do they originate from?

A quick History of ear plugs

Ear plugs have actually long been used by our ancestors. In fact, ear plugs have actually been mentioned in Homer’s Odyssey when Odysseus ordered his crew to make shaped ear plugs from melted beeswax to protect them from hearing the sirens’ dangerous vocal singing as they cruised past them. This early reference suggests using earplugs in the past; in addition, different materials such as wood, clay-based, cotton, ivory and even silver were used as ear plugs. Imagine making use of an awkward piece of resources merely to reduce the noise! Good thing advancements were made and voila, the very first silicone ear plugs were invented.

Produced by Ray and Cecilia Benner in 1962, the very first silicone variation made a substantial improvement from clay-based and wooden earplugs that it even protected against an usual ear infection referred to as swimmer’s ear. In 1972, foam was the following transformative material used for plugs for ears, invented by Ross Gardner. Foam greatly minimized noise, and ironically the motivation came from headphones with foam padding, which had and still do this day, have the capacity to damages ones hearing. Foam is made from Polyvinyl chloride, or polyurethane, or various other acrylic polymer products.

Foam ear plugs are the most extensively used. They are very easy to roll, compress, and mold to fit inside the ear canal. When decompressing the foam seals the ear canal so well that it greatly minimizes noise within a provided environment This makes foam versions perfect for use when resting, studying, reviewing, in work environments bordered by noisy tools and even landscaping.

So the next time it seems like your ears require a break from the pressure and noise around you at home, while taking a trip, think about the past behind your hearing protection and delight in the silence.

Not sure which earplugs to obtain? There’s some assistance. Look into the NRR rating on the packaging. NRR is an acronym for Noise Reduction Rating which is an obligation imposed by the US EPA for hearing protection offered in the U.S.A. Typically, the Noise Reduction Rating defines the dB or level of sound that an earplug shuts out. The greatest NRR grade is 33 and the most affordable NRR grade is at the very least 20.

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