Why People Wear Earplugs: Exploring the Different Reasons and Potential Uses

Key takeaways

  • People wear earplugs for lots of different reasons
  • They can help to protect your ears from loud noises, which is useful for people working in noisy environments or who attend loud events
  • As they reduce environmental sound, they’re also often worn by people who want to reduce sensory overload
  • Earplugs are often worn by music lovers to protect their hearing at concerts
  • They can help you to get a better night’s sleep by reducing the amount of noise reaching your ears
  • And they can be great for travel too, both to protect your hearing and reduce the amount of annoying noises around you

Earplugs. They’re so small, yet so powerful. They can protect our ears from loud noises, improve our sleep quality, and even elevate our experience of listening to music. In case you’re in any doubt, let’s dive into all the different reasons why people might wear earplugs. You might even discover some reasons you’d never considered before!

Woman lying down with earplugs

Earplugs for noise reduction

Noise-induced hearing loss is a huge issue affecting millions of people. The CDC estimates that 12.5% of 6-19 year olds (that’s 5.2 million people) and 17% of 20-69 year olds (26 million people) have suffered permanent damage to their hearing due to exposure to noise.

One of the major benefits of earplugs is that they can reduce the noise levels reaching your ears, helping to ward off noise-induced hearing loss.

Your hearing can be permanently damaged when you’re exposed to sounds of 85 decibels or above, without hearing protection, for 8 hours or more. That’s equivalent to listening in heavy city traffic for 8 hours.

Okay, so you might not be listening to busy traffic for that long (unless you’re a delivery driver), but the louder the noise, the less exposure you need before it can potentially cause hearing damage.

Take a loud car radio. It’s 91 decibels, and noise at that level can take just 2 hours before causing hearing damage. So if you have a long car journey and have the music cranked up loud, you could be risking your ears.

Or what about bars? They’re typically 94 decibels, and at that level it can take just 1 hour before hearing damage potentially kicks in. So you just need to be out for a couple of drinks before you’re susceptible to hearing damage.

It’s a scary thought. That’s why hearing protection is important in loud environments – it literally reduces the amount of noise that can reach your ears. Earplugs like Loop Experience offer up to 18 decibels of noise reduction, while filtering sound rather than muffling it. So if you’re at a concert, festival or sporting event, you can still enjoy the full experience – just at a lower volume.

Earplugs are also used by many people who work in noisy environments like construction sites and factories, helping them to protect their ear health throughout their shift.

Avoid sensory overload

Noise reduction isn’t just about protecting your ears from loud noises, though. Some people also use earplugs to reduce the noise around them , especially if they have conditions like misophonia, ADHD or autism which make them particularly sensitive to sound.

If this sounds like you, earplugs can help to reduce the amount of hustle and bustle around you, letting you focus on your work, studying, or simply going about your day in peace.

Loop Engage earplugs are specifically designed to take the edge off when you’re in noisy environments, with 16 decibels of noise reduction. They feature a patented acoustic channel and filter, meaning that you can still hear what’s going on – just at a quieter volume, so you can stay engaged with your surroundings and the people around you.

Improve sleep

Earplugs can be a game changer for people who struggle to sleep. 

Whether you have a snoring partner, noisy neighbors, or live on a bustling street, sometimes it can be tricky to fall asleep – and stay asleep all night long. 

Or what if you work night shifts? You’ve had a long night at work, and are ready to hit the hay for a few hours before your next shift – but everyone’s going about their daily business, and everything’s so noisy! As well as an eye mask to keep the light out, shift workers need a good pair of earplugs.

Earplugs can help to reduce the amount of noise that’s reaching your ears, meaning you can drift off more easily. Loop Quiet, for example, offers noise reduction of up to 24 decibels. They’re also made from super soft silicone for all-night comfort – and they come with a choice of ear tip sizes so everyone can get the perfect fit.

Musicians and music lovers

Concerts are loud. If you’ve ever been to see a band play and come out with ringing ears, you’ll know that. Those ringing ears, by the way? That’s tinnitus, a form of hearing damage, and a sure sign of why hearing protection is important, to keep you safe from even more damage.

Concerts and festivals are usually around 97 decibels, which can cause hearing damage in 30 minutes if you don’t use hearing protection. Rock concerts are even louder at 104 decibels. At that level, it can take just 7.5 minutes to sustain hearing damage! So it’s important for singers and musicians, as well as music lovers and concert goers, to protect their hearing.

But we get it, you’re at a concert to hear the music. So you don’t want to block the sound out with a pair of earplugs. Well, we have a solution! Just look out for earplugs, like Loop Experience, that are designed to filter noise, rather than block it out, so you can still have the full live music experience – just at a quieter, safer volume.

Reduce the symptoms of tinnitus

We already mentioned tinnitus – that annoying ringing or buzzing in the ears that you sometimes get after being exposed to loud noises. 

Everyone’s different, but for some people, wearing earplugs can help to alleviate the symptoms of tinnitus. Unfortunately, there’s no way of knowing in advance whether earplugs will make your tinnitus better or worse – but at Loop, we have a free 100 day return policy, so you can always try them out and see whether they work for you!

What’s more, one of the keys when it comes to tinnitus is ensuring that your symptoms don’t get any worse – and the best way to do that is by protecting your hearing with earplugs! If you have noise-induced hearing damage, you’re more likely to develop tinnitus, and the worse your hearing loss gets, the worse your tinnitus can get, too.

So, even if earplugs don’t work for you to reduce your symptoms of tinnitus, they could be the secret to ensuring it doesn’t get any worse.


You’ve found your seat on the train and settled in. You’ve taken out your brand new book and the snacks you’ve bought for the journey. And then… a baby in the row behind you starts crying. 

It’s not their fault, and they can’t help it – but you can’t stop focusing on it.

Earplugs can help to improve your traveling experience, by reducing the noises all around you. Plus, planes and trains are actually really noisy and you should be wearing hearing protection anyway. When you’re flying, the noise in a plane cabin is around 85 decibels – so depending on the length of your flight, you could be running the risk of hearing damage on a long haul flight.

What’s more, earplugs can actually help to reduce the symptoms of ‘airplane ear’. You know, that annoying pressure in your ear when you’re taking off and landing. It’s caused by changes in air pressure in your ears, but earplugs slowly equalize the pressure against your eardrum to ease the pain and discomfort of airplane ear.

There are plenty of benefits of wearing earplugs when traveling. So all you need to do now is sit back, relax and enjoy the journey!

Discover the benefits of earplugs

Hearing protection is important. But people don’t just wear earplugs for that reason – as you can see, there are myriad reasons for wearing earplugs. Whether you want to improve your sleep equality, reduce sensory overload, or indeed protect your ears from loud noises, earplugs can help.

With so many potential uses, earplugs are a must-have for anyone looking to protect your ears and improve their overall wellbeing. Ready to join the earplug revolution? Take our quiz to find the pair of earplugs that best suits your needs!

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