Why Do Headphones Hurt Our Ear And How To Make It More Comfortable To Wear One?

Headphones are an integral part of our lifestyle and most of us cannot live without it. Buying headphones can be a very task although it’s something which all music lovers enjoy. Premium headphones brands do guarantee you an assurance on sound quality but one aspect that is not guaranteed by even top-flight companies is the comfort level. Hence we end up buying top of the shelf headphones which still manage to hurt our ears. Let us find out why and how to tackle this problem.

Does the size of the headphone matter?

If the headphones are too small compared to your skull size then they will cause pain to your ears. Most people fail to recognize the importance of selecting the size of headphones but that cost them dearly during perusal. In case of headphones there are no concepts as one size fits all. The pressure that the headphones apply on your cartilage determines the comfort you experience while using them.

What is Listener’s fatigue?

This is a term used to refer to the tiredness that is usually caused after prolonged hours of listening to music. This is dependent on both the headphone’s design and our own sensitivity. After log hours of music session our eardrums try too hard to process the sound signals that they are subject to and hence gets strained. This strain causes our ear to hurt.

How to overcome it?

The only assured way of overcoming any fatigue is rest and listener’s fatigue shows no exception. Taking a few minutes off music will help your eardrums relax provided they are not subject to heavy vibrations of other kinds such as traffic or industrial operations. Take some time off your headphone and jump back in, the fatigue will be gone.

What is the clamping effect?

Headphones have a clamping effect which keeps them secured to our heads and prevents them from sliding off our ears. This is especially helpful when you are working out while wearing your headphones. But in some headphones the clamping effect is too strong for our own comfort. It puts more pressure than it should and hence ends up hurting our ears.

How do we deal with this?

The heavy clamping is caused by over tightening of the wire used inside the headphone. You can keep the headphone stretched widely over some solid substance such as books or a box and keep it that way for some time. But remember to do it gently so as to not diminish the clamping altogether. You still require a bit of clamping to keep them from falling off your ears.

Headphones and glasses

It’s a combination that can sit right next to that of oil and water, they don’t go well hand in hand. Headphones and glasses have been at war since ages and we cannot choose a winner as we can’t really do without either.

What discomforts are caused when you wear headphones while wearing glasses?

  • Auricular chondritis or the situation where you have a sore ear cartilage due to the prolonged pressure of both the objects.
  • Pressure on the temporal bone can cause severe headaches.
  • Constant discomfort due to the displacement and subsequent slippage of the glass handles against the headphone pad.

How to get relief from such discomfort?

  1. Thinner frames might help our cause when it comes to prolonged use of headphones.
  2. Reducing the clamping force would help in decreasing the pressure on the glass handle hence reducing pressure on your ear.
  3. Thicker earpads are always a good option when you are seeking for comfort when listening to your headphones. It can also help reduce the pressure on the glasses and provide a bit of relief to you.
  4.  Over the ear headphones are proven to cause less discomfort when wore over glasses as they impose less pressure on the temporal bone.
  5. The best option is to minimize the simultaneous usage of both objects, at least when one is not necessary. For instance when you are relaxing at home and enjoying music on your headphones you don’t really need the help of glasses other than to select the music that you want to be played.

Problems and solutions table

Listener’s FatigueTake some rest
Clamping effectLoosen the clamping a bit using a solid object like a box or books.
Discomfort due to glassesUse thinner frames and thicker earpads.