Welcome to another episode of The Flex Audiology Show. In this episode, we will be focusing on hearing protection and the different kinds that are available. I’ll discuss the differences between custom hearing protection and over-the-counter foam earplugs.
We get asked all the time about hearing protection and especially this time of year with hunting season on the horizon. This is also a busy time for the Lawrenceburg Speedway, so we want to ensure everyone is enjoying themselves while staying healthy at the same time.
I’ll also talk about something I should have mentioned a long time ago. Willie’s Sports Cafe is an institution in Lawrenceburg, IN, nestled on Hidden Valley Lake’s calm shores. While it’s not so hidden anymore, it still maintains its small-town charm and countryside appeal.
They cater to a local crowd with their daily happy hour prices and inventive specials. They also feature a seasonal menu that is constantly changing to offer the freshest and most local ingredients.
But first, let’s keep your hearing out of harm’s way.
How Can I Protect My Hearing?
We tackle this question all the time and have a few suggestions to make. Correct hearing protection depends on your location and proximity to loud noises. Here are the best forms of protection for a few different environments.
Basic Earplugs – You can pick these up at any Walgreens, Walmart, or stores like them. They are located in the pharmacy section and are priced very low for the amount of protection they provide.
They have a small plastic end to grab and a foam end that fits in your ear. Simply twist it up and fit it deep into your ear canal. The foam will expand and protect you from the most common loud noises.
Number one thing to know: Always wear them deep. Too often, I see people with them barely in their ears which is not providing full protection. The deeper they are, the more protected your hearing is.
These are sold at the Lawrenceburg Speedway as well as the earmuffs but will most likely be less expensive from a pharmacy.
Custom Mold – In rare cases, foam earplugs simply don’t fit or don’t suit the wearer in some manner or another. When this happens, we can get custom molds made to address their specific needs.
This removes user error and is meant for those who would wear them on an ongoing basis, e.g., for work or if you know you’ll be attending a concert series.
Starkey SoundGear – The best of them all is the Starkey SoundGear kit. These provide more than just protection at the root; they offer some of the best protection possible.
Most commonly used for hunting or going to the Speedway, these devices are equipped to handle loud and quiet environments. If the incoming noise reaches a certain level, these devices will automatically shut off for you.
I use these personally and keep them on lanyards, making them easy to travel with. I have a red one for the right ear and a blue one for the left. They are perfect for communicating with my husband at the Speedway.
SoundGear Phantom – If you want to upgrade, then SoundGear has released their Phantom version, which has connectivity to Bluetooth. This means that not only does it do everything its previous model does, which I discussed above, but it also connects to your electronic devices.
Use this feature for direct streaming and a connection to a comprehensive app that allows you to make your own adjustments easily. It’s incredible how convenient these devices are.
Still Trying to Decide Which Is for You?
You’re always free to drop me a line via email or phone to discuss these and other options in depth. Even if you have other protection, I encourage you to bring them in so we can test them. We’ll be able to tell you if they are providing the protection they promise.
Contact us anytime with your questions and concerns. We are standing by.
Love Local – Willie’s Edition
I just want to take a break from audiology for a moment to tell you all about Willie’s, an amazing local establishment. This place rocks – if you haven’t been yet, this is your sign.
We have been going there for a long time, and I apologize for not telling all of you about it sooner. You don’t have to live on the lake to access it. We don’t live on the lake, but we have a boat we use to get there after a lovely afternoon cruise.
Gotta Try the Hot Wings
We have been on a huge hot wing kick lately, and Willie’s has some of the best around. You don’t have to get them hot if you don’t want to, as they have a few options that are just as tasty but with less heat.
Try the garlic parmesan wings if you want to avoid spice. This savory combination is a crowd-pleaser, which makes them easy to share. You can also go for the bang-bang sweet BBQ. This unique sauce will have your taste buds high-fiving each other in pure delight.
Other Excellent Menu Choices
I felt like having something not-so-healthy, and the “Heartstopper” really jumped off the menu to satisfy this urge. The dish starts with crisp waffle fries — that are better than Chick-Fil-A if you ask me — topped with two kinds of cheese, bacon, onion, and finally, a drizzle of ranch dressing.
I highly recommend this for your cheat meal because it really hit the spot for me.
For something lighter, you can opt for their flavorful tacos. Choose between fish or chicken, but I recommend the fish. It comes blackened, so you get this intense flavor that makes each bite better than the last.
Check out their full menu here.
Atmosphere and Ambience
In the summer, enjoy the patio deck that overlooks the lake. It’s enormous, so you don’t feel crammed into a makeshift summer patio. There’s plenty of room for the entire family to join.
On Thursdays, they do live music, and some of the bands they get are very talented. I think the musicians love playing at Willie’s just as much as we love seeing them.