Safety should always be your top priority when using firearms, regardless of whether you’re shooting for recreation, sport, hunting, or self-defense. Wearing the appropriate protective gear can improve your shooting experience and protect your health. Here’s why ear and eye protection are not just recommended but essential when using firearms.

Safety glasses protect your eyes from debris.

Wearing eye protection such as safety glasses will prevent accidental injuries. When firing a gun, particles can fly towards your face. You may encounter powder residue, dust, or small fragments from a misfired round. Eye protection is a critical barrier between these particles and your eyes, preventing irritation or serious injuries.

The type of eye protection you choose matters.

Shooting glasses should be made from high-impact materials and meet the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) safety standards. Look for lenses marked with “ANSI Z87.1” to ensure they meet appropriate protective standards. Glasses that meet this standard undergo rigorous testing to withstand impact and offer clear vision. 

Different color tints in safety glasses enhance visual clarity and contrast sensitivity while shooting. You should choose the right type of glasses based on the environment you will be shooting in.

  • Amber or yellow lenses are ideal for low-light conditions. They can improve depth perception and contrast by filtering out blue light. As a result, your targets will appear clearer.
  • Gray lenses are beneficial in bright conditions. They reduce the overall brightness without altering color perception, resulting in a more natural view.
  • Green lenses provide contrast and reduce glare in bright sunlight. This makes them suitable for varying light conditions.

Ear protection will prevent hearing damage.

Firearms produce incredibly loud sounds, often exceeding 140 decibels. The larger the gun, the louder it will be.

Prolonged exposure to sounds over 85 decibels can cause hearing loss. A single shot can exceed this threshold by a significant margin. Thus, ear protection is crucial to decrease the intensity of these sounds and protect your hearing from permanent damage.

Choose ear protection with a high noise reduction rating.

You can choose from two types of ear protection: earmuffs, which cover your ears entirely, and ear plugs, which fit inside your ear.

Your preferred choice of ear protection should have a high noise reduction rating. The higher the rating, the better it will prevent hearing issues. You should choose earplugs or earmuffs that have a rating of 25 decibels. The higher the decibel rating, the safer it will be.   

No matter what kind of protection you have, you want to ensure it fits you properly. Improperly fitted ear protection does not prevent hearing loss. 

Earmuffs should fit securely on top of your head. There should not be a gap between your head and the band. Your earplugs should remain securely in your ear. 

Find top-rated protection at Leo’s Guns and Range.

Shop a variety of eye safety glasses and ear protection options at Leo’s Guns and Range.

Our knowledgeable staff can share their top recommendations so you can stay safe whenever you shoot. You can also put your skills to the test inside our twenty-five-yard indoor range. Visit us today at 7307 Edward Dr. in Loves Park, Illinois. We’re open every Tuesday-Sunday.