A woman putting on her noise-canceling earphones for the shooting range in Oklahoma
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Eye and Ear Protection at the Gun Range

Discover the importance of Ear Protection in Oklahoma City

Find High-Quality Ear Protection at H&H Shooting Sports

Safety is paramount whether you’re someone who likes to spend their free time at the range, takes to the field each year as a hunter, or is just getting into sport shooting. This is especially true when it comes to firearms. When most people talk about firearm safety, they often mean general rules such as keeping your finger off the trigger and storing the firearm unloaded. However, most seem to overlook personal protection. At H&H Shooting Sports, we believe safety starts with proper eye and ear protection regardless of where in Oklahoma City, OK, you are. Continuous exposure to the noise of a firearm, along with accidents such as ricochet and unburned powder spray, can damage your sight and hearing. Before your next trip to our range, let’s discuss everything you need to know.

Why Do I Need Eye Protection While Shooting?

If you’re following proper firearm safety, accidents are unlikely, but they still happen more often than you may realize while shooting. Errant birdshot, ricochet, and even muzzle flash can hurt your eyes. High-quality shooting glasses add an extra layer of security and peace of mind. Beyond keeping your eyes safe from physical impact, eye protection helps shield you from sunlight if you are at an outdoor range or on a hunting trip. Further, the color of the glasses can help you more effectively identify targets. For example, yellow is the most common color tint because it helps black rings stand out more on a standard range target. Here is an overview of the different lens colors:

  • Rose – These are desired if you shoot orange, orange with black edge, and black targets. The rose coloring helps darken the sky while fading out the green background. Hunters also wear these.
  • Target Sun – Whether you prefer light, medium, or dark, target sun lenses are great for all colored targets. If your eyes are sensitive to the sun, this is a cooler option than the more intense rose lenses.
  • Target Orange – Target orange is excellent for all-around orange targets. They are especially useful on average sun or light overcast days.
  • Bronze – Bronze lenses are a solid choice for all-purpose use such as skeet, Trap, and sporting clays. They are also effective during general hunting conditions.
  • Red – This color is designed for shooters with red/green color deficiency.
  • Yellow – These are the best options for shooting later in the day or early in the morning. They help enhance the color and make it easier to aim in low-light shooting.
  • Clear – Clear shooting glasses are applauded as a great all-around option.

What Type of Eye Protection Should You Wear When Shooting?

When searching for the proper eye protection for your needs, paying attention to the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) compliance is important. Shooting glasses that are ANSI-rated are safety-approved. This will ensure proper protection against any flying debris. For example, ANSI-rated glasses are designed to fully stop a quarter-inch steel ball traveling at 150 feet per second. We recommend eye protection with wraparound lenses made from polycarbonate or impact-resistant plastic. These lenses ensure total protection as the material is scratch-resistant and less prone to shatter if hit. As you try on eye protection, you should ensure they are:

  • Comfortable
  • Fit Well and Stay in Place While On the Move
  • Easily Cleaned
  • Fit Over Prescription Glasses
  • Durable Enough to Withstand Every Bump and Scrape

Why Should You Use Ear Protection When Shooting a Firearm?

Consistent exposure to noise from a firearm can permanently damage your hearing. You may be wondering how loud a gunshot is. A .22 LR, the quietest round in use, commonly reaches a 140-decibel level, which can cause immediate damage to your hearing. Other more powerful rounds can reach 165 decibels as the sound energy is double every 3 decibels. With hearing damage, the effects of continuous exposure to loud noises are cumulative. This means your hearing can decrease a little each time until one day, you notice your hearing has significantly diminished. Common side effects of continuous exposure include tinnitus, the inability to hear high frequencies and significant hearing loss. It’s important to use quality ear protection as hearing damage is irreversible.

Invest in Quality Ear Protection for Shooting

Like eye protection, the first thing you should check for ear protection is the Noise Reduction Rating (NRR). NRR represents the maximum number of decibels that can be reduced. Essentially, the higher the NRR, the better the protection. Ear protection for shooters is broken into two categories: on-ear and in-ear protection. In-ear protections are often smaller, lightweight, and inexpensive but don’t fit as securely as on-ear protection. Further, they tend to fall out during recoil. Most shooters use a combination of both as it delivers terrific hearing protection while ensuring you always remain safe and comfortable.

Always Wear Protection at the Gun Range

Ear protection is essential to range safety. Foam earplugs, ear muffs, or electronic hearing protection are all viable options but according to some foam earplugs provide the best hearing protection, but only if used properly. You can’t just shove them in your ears and hope for the best.
Check out this great video from USCCA on how to properly insert foam earplugs.

You should wear protective glasses and hearing protection whenever you fire a gun. Without proper protection, a trip to the range could cause your ears to ring or permanently damage your hearing or eyesight. H&H Shooting Sports offers an easy solution to this potential issue. We offer top-of-the-line hearing and eye protection products. Our team believes protecting your eyes and ears is vital to a safe shooting and firearm protection philosophy. To learn more about the shooting accessories we carry or to find the right set of protection for your next trip to the range, be sure to stop by today. You can rely on our seasoned team to answer any questions.