Forums: Skydiving: Safety and Training:
Earplugs? Personal preference or a real reason?

 

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3mpire  (C 39657)

Aug 2, 2010, 9:53 AM
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Earplugs? Personal preference or a real reason? Can't Post

I've noticed a few licensed jumpers and instructors who put in ear plugs approx 1-2 minutes before door. Is it a personal preference re: noise or is there some other reason that isn't obvious to me?


Premier NWFlyer  (D 29960)

Aug 2, 2010, 10:00 AM
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Re: [3mpire] Earplugs? Personal preference or a real reason? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
I've noticed a few licensed jumpers and instructors who put in ear plugs approx 1-2 minutes before door. Is it a personal preference re: noise or is there some other reason that isn't obvious to me?

I see more of them taking their earplugs OUT a just before exit. Lots of people wear them on the ride up to help protect their ears from the loud airplane noise. Some still wear them in freefall, many don't. Personally, I take them out before exit because I want to make sure that when I get under canopy I can hear as much as possible.


Premier Remster  (C License)

Aug 2, 2010, 10:10 AM
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Re: [3mpire] Earplugs? Personal preference or a real reason? [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
Is it a personal preference re: noise or is there some other reason that isn't obvious to me?
It's a personal preference of not wanting permanent hearing damage Wink.

hearing damage can come from very very high noise that creates instant damage, or from accumulative damage from prolonged exposure. The louder the noise (to simplify thing) and the longer over a day you are exposed to it, to more probable and important the damage.

I do not have data points to verify it, but, if you do a couple jumps a week, I doubt your exposure in the plane is high enough to damage your hearing. But if you are having a busy weekend, with lots of jumps, or work at the DZ, then I'm pretty sure it could be significant.

And while the noise in freefall is part of that exposure equation, like many others, I want full hearing capacity when I am under canopy.


jon211  (B License)

Aug 2, 2010, 10:15 AM
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Re: [NWFlyer] Earplugs? Personal preference or a real reason? [In reply to] Can't Post

I've seen this also and am curious. My first thought is that you wouldn't want ear plugs due to the pressure change. That you would want your ear canal to equalize with atmosphere.

But if this isn't a concern i would definately try it.


Premier Remster  (C License)

Aug 2, 2010, 10:17 AM
Post #5 of 76 (6774 views)
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Re: [jon211] Earplugs? Personal preference or a real reason? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
I've seen this also and am curious. My first thought is that you wouldn't want ear plugs due to the pressure change. That you would want your ear canal to equalize with atmosphere.

But if this isn't a concern i would definately try it.

As a student, check with your instructor. I would not want my student to have to bother with them. I have sometimes forgotten to remove them on jumprun, and it is distracting. You dont need more distraction.


rehmwa  (D 12816)

Aug 2, 2010, 10:18 AM
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Re: [3mpire] Earplugs? Personal preference or a real reason? [In reply to] Can't Post

I have considered putting them in after people start drinking at the end of the day.


tetra316  (D 26945)

Aug 2, 2010, 10:39 AM
Post #7 of 76 (6749 views)
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Re: [jon211] Earplugs? Personal preference or a real reason? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
I've seen this also and am curious. My first thought is that you wouldn't want ear plugs due to the pressure change. That you would want your ear canal to equalize with atmosphere.

But if this isn't a concern i would definately try it.

That is not an issue, due to pressure change. I wear hearing aids, even when jumpingWink

You just want to make sure any ear plugs are snug but can still move when you move your jaw. That is how you can equalize the pressure if necessary, but manipulating your jaw.


headoverheels  (D License)

Aug 2, 2010, 11:11 AM
Post #8 of 76 (6714 views)
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Re: [3mpire] Earplugs? Personal preference or a real reason? [In reply to] Can't Post

I put mine in before boarding, and remove them after landing, in an attempt to minimize hearing loss.


TheCaptain  (D License)

Aug 2, 2010, 11:23 AM
Post #9 of 76 (6702 views)
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Re: [3mpire] Earplugs? Personal preference or a real reason? [In reply to] Can't Post

I put my ear plugs in right before exit and take them out as soon as I am under canopy, I find the noise in freefall to be too loud for me and I am trying to reduce hearing loss.


FrancoR

Aug 2, 2010, 11:56 AM
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Re: [Remster] Earplugs? Personal preference or a real reason? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Quote:
I do not have data points to verify it, but, if you do a couple jumps a week, I doubt your exposure in the plane is high enough to damage your hearing. But if you are having a busy weekend, with lots of jumps, or work at the DZ, then I'm pretty sure it could be significant.

At last years Safety day of the german parachute federation there was an expert for acoustics who is also a skydiver with a very intersting lecture. Conclusion was that he highly recomended wearing earplugs while skydiving but they should allow air to pass through due to the pressure change.

Here are the notes to his lecture:
http://www.metatag.de/...llschirmsportler.pdf

It is in german so just look at the graphs, starting on page 20. Page 23 shows the Volume for different types of planes, tunnel and freefall! Page 38 and39 recomended hearing protection for freefall.

Hope this helps, i ordered myself a couple of Worksafe earplugs. Smile


Premier Remster  (C License)

Aug 2, 2010, 12:22 PM
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Re: [FrancoR] Earplugs? Personal preference or a real reason? [In reply to] Can't Post

Wow.. Actual data... It's so much more fun assuming stuff! Wink

Thanks!Smile


Premier billvon  (D 16479)
Moderator
Aug 2, 2010, 12:32 PM
Post #12 of 76 (6629 views)
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Re: [jon211] Earplugs? Personal preference or a real reason? [In reply to] Can't Post

> My first thought is that you wouldn't want ear plugs due to the pressure
>change. That you would want your ear canal to equalize with atmosphere.

Most earplugs are not tight or impermeable enough for that to be an issue.


3mpire  (C 39657)

Aug 2, 2010, 12:39 PM
Post #13 of 76 (6620 views)
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Re: [FrancoR] Earplugs? Personal preference or a real reason? [In reply to] Can't Post

wow I never really felt like the aircraft or even free fall was all that loud--maybe i've been to see too many loud bands in small clubs? so from that PDF it appears that in the cabin it is around 95dB, and free fall can spike up to 120dB.

according to this web site CDC says that "for every 3 dBs over 85dB, the permissible exposure time before possible damage can occur is cut in half." 85dB is permissible for 8 hours. Their chart shows that 90dB is ok for 60 minutes, and 115 is ok ~30sec.

So at most, it looks like during free fall you're potentially at risk, but it's not that far out of acceptable standards. I guess over many dives and many years it could add up, but unless i'm looking at this data wrong, it doesn't sound like it is a *huge* risk.

I flipped through the SIM and I didn't see anything in there regarding hearing loss related to skydiving. It never came up in instruction, but it might be interesting to see if someone who is more medically inclined knew of any research that has been done on this specifically (in english, lol)?


(This post was edited by 3mpire on Aug 2, 2010, 12:41 PM)


TheCaptain  (D License)

Aug 2, 2010, 12:49 PM
Post #14 of 76 (6603 views)
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Re: [3mpire] Earplugs? Personal preference or a real reason? [In reply to] Can't Post

 For me it is a personal preference thing, I have some hearing loss(and constant ringing in my ears) from concerts and club and I would like to minimize any more hearing loss. I know lots of instructors that do not use them and they hear fine.


Hellis

Aug 2, 2010, 1:04 PM
Post #15 of 76 (6588 views)
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Re: [3mpire] Earplugs? Personal preference or a real reason? [In reply to] Can't Post

I use these: http://www.surefire.com/EP3-Sonic-Defenders
They are supposed to block the noise thats above 85 db and let other trough.
I dont agree that its some kind of wonder earplug but i can have them in and still talk to people.
But once in freefall they block enough.
Also i can have them in the ear, but pulled out enough to let all sound pass.


Orange1  (B 2638)

Aug 2, 2010, 1:13 PM
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Re: [rehmwa] Earplugs? Personal preference or a real reason? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
I have considered putting them in after people start drinking at the end of the day.

LaughLaugh


pchapman  (D 1014)

Aug 2, 2010, 3:31 PM
Post #17 of 76 (6526 views)
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Re: [3mpire] Earplugs? Personal preference or a real reason? [In reply to] Can't Post

Going back to the original question, can the original poster confirm that he saw jumpers putting IN ear plugs shortly before exit (who, it could be implied, were wearing nothing before)? Or was it a misapprehension?


Cueb  (C License)

Aug 2, 2010, 3:45 PM
Post #18 of 76 (6516 views)
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Re: [pchapman] Earplugs? Personal preference or a real reason? [In reply to] Can't Post

Personally I use them every time. I put them on before entering aircraft and take them off after landing. I focus on looking around a lot under canopy. Another canopy shouldn't accidentally get within hearing distance anyway.. Only time I got problems with my ears was when I tried these plugs made of silicone. Foam plugs aren't airproof so I use them.


(This post was edited by Cueb on Aug 2, 2010, 3:47 PM)


3mpire  (C 39657)

Aug 2, 2010, 3:57 PM
Post #19 of 76 (6510 views)
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Re: [pchapman] Earplugs? Personal preference or a real reason? [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
Going back to the original question, can the original poster confirm that he saw jumpers putting IN ear plugs shortly before exit (who, it could be implied, were wearing nothing before)? Or was it a misapprehension?


They were specifically putting them in after we were almost to full altitude. I recall seeing the same thing over multiple jumps with a few folks in particular. About the time that everyone was putting their goggles on and securing their helmets approx 1-2 minutes before door, they would open a cargo pocket on their suit, pull out ear plugs, put them in, put on their goggles, and then secure their helmet. They were not wearing them prior, including boarding and take off.


(This post was edited by 3mpire on Aug 2, 2010, 3:58 PM)


feuergnom  (D License)

Aug 2, 2010, 4:15 PM
Post #20 of 76 (6498 views)
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Re: [3mpire] Earplugs? Personal preference or a real reason? [In reply to] Can't Post

apart from protecting your ears from a loss of hearing: loud noise also has a high stress potential - so waering some sort of protection makes a lot of sense

over the last two years i've noticed that my hearing is getting lousy. the result of to many hours spent in clubs and airplanes Unsure


kallend  (D 23151)

Aug 2, 2010, 5:05 PM
Post #21 of 76 (6478 views)
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Re: [headoverheels] Earplugs? Personal preference or a real reason? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
I put mine in before boarding, and remove them after landing, in an attempt to minimize hearing loss.

So do I.


Bramble  (A 59057)

Aug 2, 2010, 5:20 PM
Post #22 of 76 (6470 views)
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Re: [3mpire] Earplugs? Personal preference or a real reason? [In reply to] Can't Post

Does anyone know if a full helmet helps reduce noise?


Andy9o8  (D License)

Aug 2, 2010, 5:24 PM
Post #23 of 76 (6468 views)
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Re: [Bramble] Earplugs? Personal preference or a real reason? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Does anyone know if a full helmet helps reduce noise?

You mean a full-face? Sure it does.

I'm one of those who use foam plugs, put them in before getting on the plane and keep them in until I land.


(This post was edited by Andy9o8 on Aug 2, 2010, 5:25 PM)


pchapman  (D 1014)

Aug 2, 2010, 5:39 PM
Post #24 of 76 (6458 views)
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Re: [3mpire] Earplugs? Personal preference or a real reason? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
They were specifically putting them in after we were almost to full altitude.

That in particular I can't say much about as I haven't personally seen it. Maybe more common with a relatively quiet plane (e.g., Twin Otter vs. C-182 or Skyvan).


apt3studiodiver  (B 33514)

Aug 2, 2010, 6:38 PM
Post #25 of 76 (6447 views)
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Re: [pchapman] Earplugs? Personal preference or a real reason? [In reply to] Can't Post

WHAT?! can you repeat that?! lol, sorry had to..

Hearing loss is no joking matter though on the serious side. My DZ has a bucket of earplugs by the manifest computer in the gear room, check if your on a load grab some ear plugs and go. I should use them but havn't yet. I mean to each time though Crazy

Also I dont know the exact decibel numbers but a turbine craft definitely sounds louder and higher pitched than a piston 182. So might be more of a consideration if your jumping a turbine all day since its a louder craft overall.

ETA:

If its a concern for someone riding a motorcycle at 60MPH probably a concern for skydivers going double that...nifty article below

http://t-gone.com/...ycle-cause-tinnitus/


(This post was edited by apt3studiodiver on Aug 2, 2010, 6:45 PM)


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