Safe to Go to a Bowling Alley? What Earplugs to Wear?

Discussion in 'Support' started by Brandon1994, Mar 3, 2019.

    1. Brandon1994

      Brandon1994 Member

      Location:
      United States
      Tinnitus Since:
      2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud Noise Exposure
      I was thinking about going to a bowling alley with my friends this coming Saturday. My tinnitus has been OK at times. My last spike lasted around 2 weeks and I'm not sure what caused it but right now it went back down the baseline which I'm coping with.

      I've had tinnitus for around 5 months so I'm fairly new to it all.

      My question is that is it safe to go to the bowling alley? I don't want tinnitus controlling my life. I just don't want to make it worse. I have earplugs that I use.

      I was thinking about getting some earplugs that allow me to hear people speaking and drown the background noise out.

      What are the best earplugs you guys know of that allow that? I believe they are called musician's ear plugs.
       
    2. Bill Bauer
      No Mood

      Bill Bauer Member Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      February, 2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      It depends on how you define the word "safe." If what you are asking is "is there a chance that I will get a serious spike", then the answer is Yes.

      In certain light it is safe in the sense that most likely you will be ok. But the chance that you will regret going is not negligible.

      My rule of thumb is "if you have to ask whether it is safe, it is not safe." For me, since the upside is just a couple of hours and the possible downside (albeit with a low probability) can last a lifetime, it doesn't make sense to take any chances with this.
       
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    3. kmohoruk
      Nerdy

      kmohoruk Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2005
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud Noise, Ear Infection, TMJ
      You'll be fine. I've been bowling many times with my partner and had no issues.

      If it makes you feel better, keep a pair of ear plugs in your pocket. My guess is though, you won't need them.

      Regarding musician ear plugs. I also have a pair of those and have only had to use them on occasion when I've seen a movie or two. They are a bit expensive, but like you said, they give you some protection from sound while also letting you talk with the people around you.

      Good on you for getting out there and having fun with your friends. :)
       
    4. Digital Doc

      Digital Doc Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      noise induced
      Would go with foam earplugs, and don't forget that many bowling alleys play music at higher volumes to drown out the bowling noises, so they tend to be quite loud. The musician earplugs are not as protective, and probably not enough for this activity.
       
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    5. Flamingo1

      Flamingo1 Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Orlando, FL
      Tinnitus Since:
      4-15-2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic trauma
      Bowling alleys can be incredibly loud. I would be very careful, especially since you are new to tinnitus and your ears are still in recovery Wear foam earplugs and LEAVE if you feel that it is too loud. (I set my threshold to ambient noise levels of 80 dB.) Download a sound meter to your phone to check the levels. The last thing you want to do is make your tinnitus worse.
       
    6. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Brandon1994

      Brandon1994 Member

      Location:
      United States
      Tinnitus Since:
      2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud Noise Exposure
      Thanks! I called the bowling alley in advanced and they said they will not be playing music during the hours i'm there. They said they only do that at night. So that should cut down on the volume a lot because I know how loud they can be. I will be attending around the afternoon. I will certainly be bringing my foam earplugs encase it gets too loud. I just downloaded the app to my phone. I have 2 questions.

      Would these Eargasm plugs work enough. I would like to actually hear my friends talking while still being protected. https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B075SJ3Y8M/ref=ox_sc_act_title_1?smid=AP3YH085XHE3B&psc=1

      How accurate are the decibel apps on the phone. Thanks
       
    7. Jazzer

      Jazzer Member Benefactor Ambassador Hall of Fame Advocate

      Location:
      UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      1/1995
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise
      “Sod bowling - Sod loud noises
      - Ears come first !!”

      (just my view)
       
    8. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Brandon1994

      Brandon1994 Member

      Location:
      United States
      Tinnitus Since:
      2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud Noise Exposure
      Just wanted to provide a quick update on this. I went bowling with my friends and had a amazing time. I wore my musicians ear plugs which are really nice it kept the sound down a lot and I could still hear my friends. I didn't have an increase in tinnitus at all. I'm not going to let tinnitus control my life. But I still carry my Earplugs where ever I go for those unexpected sounds.
       
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    9. OnceUponaTime
      Busy

      OnceUponaTime Member Podcast Patron Benefactor Hall of Fame Advocate

      Location:
      New York
      Tinnitus Since:
      11/11
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise
      Glad you had a good time. You did the right thing by protecting your ears.

      Once
       
    10. Bill Bauer
      No Mood

      Bill Bauer Member Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      February, 2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      Keep in mind that if you begin hitting a wall with a hammer, it takes some time before you get to see the objects on the other side of the wall.
       
    11. linearb
      Psychedelic

      linearb Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      beliefs are makyo and reality ignores them
      Tinnitus Since:
      1999
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      karma
      I tend to wear plugs when I'm bowling but I'm not convinced it's actually necessary, depending on the bowling alley. Places that are packed or blasting music are probably into the danger zone for a lot of people, but the actual sound of bowling itself doesn't bother me and is a series of extremely short noises, which is a lot different than continuous noise.

      I can't remember ever walking out of a bowling alley with ears feeling fuzzy or muffled; for me that's generally the sign that I have done something I shouldn't (though, for at least the last 5-10 years, it's probably rare that I've bowled too long without plugs).
       
    12. BobDigi
      Kick ass

      BobDigi Member

      Location:
      UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      5.6.14
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud noise
      Just go. Wear earplugs and just go. You'll be fine. The Alpine music earplugs are brilliant. I bought them on Amazon for £17. You can hear everything perfectly, just quieter. At a normal bowling alley you'll be fine. If its one of those bowling alleys that turn down the lights and try and be a disco, and play music, you definitely want to only go with earplugs in.
       
    13. GlennS

      GlennS Member Podcast Patron Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      1992
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud music
      This. Bowling, especially on weekends, is like a nightclub the way they do lightshows and play music. I have gone before but only if I use earplugs and that means the people around me have to be aware of the earplugs which is always awkward and impedes conversation.

      BTW, I do not trust earplugs that advertise being able to selectively protect. I have high frequency hyperacusis and so anything that lets in higher frequencies (like what facilitates conversation) is going to let in too much noise for my ears to handle. I need more of a high-end rolloff/limiter. YMMV.
       
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