Hearing loss is one of the most common work-related injuries and presents a range of short and long term implications on worker's health and well-being.

For example, a fabricator that hasn't used earplugs may go home with slightly dulled hearing and a slight ringing in their ears, but all is well the next morning. If they were to continue regularly working in a noisy environment without their protection, it could lead to potentially disabling permanent hearing loss and tinitus later in life.


Hearing protection should be issued to employees where extra protection is needed above what has been achieved using noise control, or as a short-term measure while other methods of controlling noise are being developed.

You should not use hearing protection as an alternative to controlling noise by technical and organisational means.

Hearing protection, such as ear defenders and earplugs, is designed to protect the delicate hearing system from overexposure to noise. It all comes down to efficacy.

Efficacy is related to the amount of time your hearing protection is used. An uncomfortable or cumbersome hearing protection device with a lack of communication capabilities is useless as the wearer is likely to remove it when they need to have a conversation. Each removal of a hearing protector decreases its efficacy. A product offering 30dB of noise reduction when worn 100% of exposure time (8h), will lose the equivalent of 7dB if removed for 1 minute only. The same earplug, if worn half of the time, will offer only 3dB of noise reduction: In other words – Nothing!

Directive 2003/10/EC was established and adopted by the European parliament and the Council of the European Union. It outlines the minimum health and safety requirements regarding the exposure of workers to the risks arising from physical agents (noise). The objective of this Directive is to lay down minimum requirements for the protection of workers from risks to their health and safety arising or likely to arise from exposure to noise and in particular the risk to hearing.

As well as hearing damage, excessive noise can result in occupational accidents:

  • Noise masks warning signals
  • Noise hinders communication
  • Noise diverts attention

The Directive defines the physical parameters that serve as risk predictors, namely:

  • peak sound pressure
  • daily noise exposure level
  • weekly noise exposure level

It sets exposure limit values and defines an employer’s call to action with respect to these predictors and their noise-exposed workers at risk. The exposure limit is set at 85dB(A) and takes into account the attenuation provided by hearing protection.

Note: *Occupational noise legislation has been adopted in many countries with varying requirements. To find out more about regulations in your area, please contact Donside Safety on +44 (0)1224 707468 or email

Custom fitted is best

For the most comfortable and most effective hearing protection, it is hard to beat custom moulded earplugs.

They beat ear defenders as they are much smaller and less cumbersome and they beat standard earplugs as they are custom fitted to each ear canal - which, like fingerprints, are unique to every individual.

The problem is, traditionally, an impression of your ear must be made before being sent to a laboratory for manufacturing and it takes days, sometimes weeks before the product is sent back to you. A time consuming and expensive process.

The ideal hearing protection product would be the custom moulded earplug that can be fitted instantly on site. The option that bypasses the labs but is still comfortable and easy to insert with tuned attenuation so that the wearer is best protected, yet doesn't feel the need to remove their protection at any point...

SONOMAX™ is your best solution - Check it out here!

A custom-fitted earplug ready to use in less than 10 minutes, Sonomax hearing protection is truly a unique product combining the proven superior performance of custom hearing protection with the convenience of a Do-It-Yourself fitting system. More than 12 patented technologies are bundled into this innovative fitting system.

Resulting from over 15 years of research, SonomaxTM custom-fit hearing protection meets the expectations of increasingly demanding users who want a product to combine performance, comfort and safety.

Sonomax earplugs are fitted, tested when requested, adjusted and delivered IMMEDIATELY there and then!

Everyone agrees that noise-induced hearing loss is a serious occupational hazard for all workers and professionals exposed to high level sounds. With ears being as distinctive as fingerprints, SonoLab proves that only earpieces, custom-fitted to the exact shape of your ears, can give you the full or attenuated protection you require – comfortably, effectively and with ease of insertion.

Hearing is a must to ensure safety

Overprotection is as dangerous as underprotection. A worker that cannot hear warning signals or recognize speech will remove their protection thus increasing risk of hearing loss. Also, a worker who can not hear is 55% more at risk for a workplace accident. SonoLab pioneered the development of a technology which would later help to solve these issues. The level of noise reduction is adjusted by inserting an acoustic damper into the Sonomax earplug.

This proprietary system consists of a single-use headband with integrated inflation pumps that are filled with a medical grade silicon compound.

Inflatable earpieces are docked and ready for expansion.

The safety of the product is thoroughly tested including the strength of the bladders - which can be expanded to over 13 times the volume of an ear canal.

Why adopt SONOMAX™?

To stop the insidious affliction of noise-induced hearing loss; to guarantee adequate protection and preserve quality of hearing and quality of life.

  • Custom-fit means comfort
  • Superior acoustic seal means adequate protection
  • Easy means fast to implement
  • Ergonomic handle means easy to insert
  • Adjustable attenuation for different noise environments means ability to communicate in noise
  • Reasonable cost and 2 year warranty means affordable
  • Eco-friendly and reusable means less environmental impact

We can send one of our representatives to assist with the fittings or you can control the process in-house after a quick and simple training session.

Each SonomaxTM product is sold as a complete kit composed of a single use headband, a lubricant bottle, faceplates, a detachable cord and name tag, a carrying pouch, and a cleaning wipe. A manual guide and a fast user guide is also included.

Please contact us on or simply call 01224 707468 if you have any questions or queries