I posted some eye care tips awhile back-
So ears another one!
I know that we all wear ear protection but it's not all the same. Like everything else, some units are better quality than others. Some have noise cancellation, some have built in radio & i-pod jack, and some are 10 bucks off the shelf at the saw shop.
Here's the thing, work related hearing loss is most prevalent in shop & factory settings where there is a constant, steady, un-changing in decibels background noise, this is what does the most damage. (with of course the exception of military combat) Some people think that loud rock music is bad, for example, but i can say for sure, and from personal experience that it isn't. I played in and mixed for loud bands when i was younger, and have listened to a loud i-pod ever since with no apparent damage. Again it is a steady background drone sound that kills your inner ear.
The chainsaw varies in noise level somewhat, but we're actually running it at the same RPM's for extended periods of time, so this is a high risk for damage tool. Cheap headphones are better than nothing, but i suggest to do yourself a favor and move up to a better unit before it's too late. Hearing loss creeps up on you and in most cases the damage irreversible.
So, around 3 years ago my i-tunes program bit the dust and i started using a cheaper set of headphones laying around in the shop. Sometimes after running the lawn tractor i would notice a ringing in my ears (classic tell tale symptom) and after careful consideration i've come to realize i have noticeable hearing loss just from 3 years, more than all the rest of my life put together. I'm totally convinced now that background music is a great noise cancellation because it's constantly changing the decibel levels. Here's a new set i've been trying, so far i like them allot they fit nice & snug, half decent sound quality, around $50 on Amazon.