MemberSeptember 15, 2021 at 7:43 pm
I’ve grown up here in Mississippi and, like many boys down here, have been shooting all my life. Fired my first gun, a black powder rifle, when I was 7. Killed my first deer shortly after. Have sent many thousands of rounds down range for damn near 30 years now.
I didn’t grow up being told ear pro was needed. Nobody I knew used it. As a kid, I would shoot and didn’t notice any particular loudness. No ringing in the ears. Nothing. Didn’t bother me in the least. I could send several rounds of 12ga slugs down range and hear perfectly fine right after. As if it wasn’t even very loud.
Well, sometime around my early twenties I got to worrying about protecting my hearing. I don’t want to be like some of these old timers around here that can’t hear someone yelling at them 10 foot away to save their life. So I started using ear plugs because I like being able to hear.
Every now and then I’ll forget to put my plugs in or I’ll not use them when hunting. But now if I fire a gun it hurts the fuck out of my ears. My ears will go to ringing and everything. Even with a 9mm.
My question is: Why is this happening now? Why didn’t I get ringing in the ears as a kid when my hearing *should* be worse than it was back then? I feel like if I ever needed to use my ccw to defend myself or something, the ringing in my ears after firing a shot would leave me at a disadvantage or distract me somehow. Especially if I’m indoors. I want to protect my hearing as much as I can but I don’t want to have to be dependent on ear-pro to shoot, if that makes any sense.
Anyone know what’s caused this weird phenomenon?
man_of_the_banannasGuestSeptember 15, 2021 at 7:43 pm
Were you shooting the same guns? There is a *huge* difference between a 18″ or 20″ barrel 22, and a 10″ 5.56.
jakestir17GuestSeptember 15, 2021 at 7:43 pm
Not sure what causes is that other than little kids are dumb and tough so maybe you just didn’t notice it. As far as hearing issues in a self defense you will most likely experience something called “auditory exclusion.” Basically your bodies stress response will block out a lot sounds.
IrvxingGuestSeptember 15, 2021 at 7:43 pm
Same. Now 30 and my tinnitus acts up even when people are talking loudly around me.
The_Gay_DeceiverGuestSeptember 15, 2021 at 7:43 pm
I’m sure you just rolled with it because the prospect of hearing damage didn’t even cross you mind, so you just took it in stride and the actual sensation faded from memory.
Although, there is actually a condition that causes your hearing to become more sensitive in response to trauma. Your acuity won’t increase, if anything it’ll get worse, but sounds are more liable to “hurt” more, and a gunshot will definitely suck a lot more because of it. I actually have it in my left ear a bit because of *reasons*, the ENT I went to about it told me the name but I can’t remember it..
Anyway, yeah it’s possible your ears became more sensitive over time from trauma as well. If you ever notice a static-y sound in response to certain pitches in loud music, you could have it.
New_Gun_Guy90GuestSeptember 15, 2021 at 7:43 pm
Conditioning. You were conditioned to be used to the sound. Now you are conditioned for your ear pro. A lot of experts recommend sending a few rounds down range(outdoors) without ear pro on so you know how it’s going to sound if you need it and it’s not a total shock. A lot of people have probably never fired a gun without ear pro and it can be very loud. This is also why a lot of people say to use a suppressor on a home defense handgun or carbine.
rafriGuestSeptember 15, 2021 at 7:43 pm
Yeah tinnitus is a bitch, next time to carry a suppressed firearm.
Glum-Pen-728GuestSeptember 15, 2021 at 7:43 pm
yes when i was in my teens I shot a 12 ga slug and it didnt hurt my ears one bit. No ringing. No pain.
N0_Tr3bbl3GuestSeptember 15, 2021 at 7:43 pm
“kids bounce.” -Dads everywhere
Young children cannot get tinnitus. Guns were just as loud, but you weren’t being injured by the sound when you were a kid.
ilikerelishGuestSeptember 15, 2021 at 7:43 pm
For the same reason that the sun is so bright when you take off your sun glasses that you wear regularly, and for the same reason when you go through a dry spell sex feels so much better. You started using hearing protection. You have conditioned yourself to low level noise. Now exposing yourself to higher than your normal levels of noise you are over stimulating your ears which to an extent are more sensitized. Almost certainly if you went out regularly and shot without hearing protection again you would acclimate back to louder noises, and potentially lose some of your hearing.
As a boy the sound of guns didn’t bother me either, but about high school, when fowling season rolled around for the first 3 days I would have a splitting headache, then after be fine for the rest of the season. Like you, I started using hearing protection for range trips, but never in the field for safety reasons. That only made me more sensitive to sound. I used to not care about the sound of machinery, and shop tools, but now I even find those to be unpleasant because I have been protecting my hearing for so long.
TheGoodJudgeHoldenGuestSeptember 15, 2021 at 7:43 pm
HERRING LAWS?? YES, I AGREE WE NEED TO REFORM HERRING LAWS! THOSE DAMN FISH GET AWAY WITH EVERYTHING!!
fidelityportlandGuestSeptember 15, 2021 at 7:43 pm
> Anyone know what’s caused this weird phenomenon?
Yeah, I have similar memories. I don’t know how to explain this, but air pressure has a lot to do with sound. My “hearing protection” was wadded up toilet paper, and we didn’t generally wear protection until we shot the 30-30, 12 gauge, or some of the 9mm pistols – but with the .22 we never bothered. All of this was on the Oregon Coast.
Then I move up to North Dakota in the military and bought my first .22LR at a pawn shop and it made my ears ring.
I can shoot a 10/22 in Oregon all day long and my ears don’t ring, I think it’s totally hearing safe, but other people online complain about how it hurts their hearing.
The only reason I can account for this different experience is air pressure and ambient condition differences – but I’m not a stupid science bitch so I have no idea how/why this happens.
I’m also shooting in wide open spaces on the top of hills in a forest opening – if you’re shooting at a range in a stall with a roof and walls then the noise is going to be different.
UstuckWHATinurAssGuestSeptember 15, 2021 at 7:43 pm
As someone that works at a fairly large children’s hospital, I can attest to they fact that kids are dumb asses.
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