So with all of this in mind, why aren't many woodworkers wearing hearing protection? There are a few key reasons:
Hearing protection is often restrictive and uncomfortable.
Many woodworkers find hearing protection uncomfortable, distracting them from their job and affecting their performance. In many cases, they're
not wrong. Conventional hearing protection tends to be large and bulky, and it can get in the way of doing work. If hearing protection fails to
fit the user properly, it can require frequent readjustment, influencing job performance and productivity.
Workshops are hot.
Speaking of comfortability, woodworking tends to take place in a shop environment - and these environments tend to get hot, especially when you consider the tools that most professionals use in said environments. As a result, even workers who always wear hearing protection may remove them throughout the day when they become too hot or uncomfortable. Unfortunately, doing so will leave them subjected to hearing damage
based on the workplace activities mentioned above.
Woodworkers want the freedom to listen to music and other entertainment.
Some woodworkers refuse appropriate ear protection on the job because they wear headphones to listen to music, podcasts, audiobooks, or other
entertainment. Conventional headphones, however, shouldn't be confused with hearing protection. While noise-canceling headphones can dampen sound to a certain extent, many standard, non-safety certified headphone models barely dampen sound at all. Wearing headphones on the job often does more harm than good, as workers are likely to crank up the volume to hear it over the noise of their tools. Most conditional headphones allow users to exceed 85 dB, damaging hearing and making workers unaware of their surroundings.