You might not think about it, but mowing the lawn can be doing lasting damage to your ears. According to Consumer Reports, lawn mowers create noise levels between 86 and 99 decibels -- which in the higher ranges, rivals the intense noise of rock concerts and sporting events. The Hearing Loss Association puts mowers even higher, at about 106 decibels. Instead of earplugs or ear muffs, you can try noise-canceling headphones to help protect your hearing while you mow the lawn.
What to Look For
When you're exposed to loud noise, use ear plugs or ear muffs, suggests the Hearing Loss Association of America. Ear plugs are inexpensive, but ear muffs -- which can include the noise-canceling, headphone variety -- can be expensive. The advantage of noise-canceling ear muff headphones is that you can plug them into a music player. So, you'll be able to listen to tunes or the radio at a reasonable level while blocking out the lawn mower. Look for a pair that goes completely around your ears to block out the most sound. To keep wires out of your way -- which could get tangled around your arm and make it more difficult or dangerous to use a push mower -- look for wireless headphones. Some come with custom rechargeable batteries, which means you'll have to keep them on a charger when not in use, or buy a second, sometimes expensive set of batteries. With all of those features identified, listen to several pairs to find the ones with the best sound, since noise-canceling headphones often distort sounds, notes PC Mag.
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