Why earplugs matter

Because Tinnitus is something you really rather not have.

Imagine an old TV. The big, bulky and heavy one with CRT screen. And now try to remember a sound those tubes and stuff inside it make, that high-pitched hissing, sounding like neverending stream of static electricity.

And now imagine it doesn’t stop even if you press the power off button. You hear it when you walk on the pavement, you can perceive it while trying to get asleep and it interferes with your attention. Of course you gradually get used to it and almost forget it’s there, but now and then it comes back and reminds you of its presence.

It’s called tinnitus.

My arty spectrogram model of tinnitus via manipulating The Warning by Nine Inch Nails. For more specific examples of tinnitus, head here.

Tinnitus is a medical condition caused by a number of things, but the major one is exposing your ears to a high-volume sound. It can happen suddenly during one unlucky accident (my case) or by destroying your hearing over time by staying unprotected for long periods of time in noisy environments like at shows or concerts. If you are fortunate, you end up just with aforementioned hissing — if not, ringing and thumping can accompany it too.

Now, I have had it for more than 5 years. There’s no known treatment, only some temporarily-relieving techniques using lasers, exercise and so on. Once you have tinnitus, you have it for life.

Solution exists…

So I urge everyone to not f*ck with their hearing and wear a pair of good earplugs. And by good I by no means mean the 2$-worth ones from your local pharmacy — not that they don’t protect enough (actually, they do quite well), but they distort the music. And I get it, nobody wants to pay for a show and then not be able to hear it properly.

Solution are earplugs, the ones like Etymotic Research manufactures (and they are, of course, not the only ones). Yes, the plugs are 20$. But hey, that isn’t that much when it saves your ears. Refrain from two fancy burgers and do something for your ears and their inner cells. They will thank you in the long run.

Because you don’t have to hear CRT hissing all-day-long. You don’t have to learn how to sleep with it. You don’t have to return from shows with ringing in your ears. And if you still can, do something about it.

Trust me, I’ve been there.

(I’m not affiliated with Etymotic, they have given me nothing and there are certainly different brands making the same stuff. I just use their plugs and like them.)

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