3M Earplug Lawsuit Lawyer
Last updated Tuesday, May 9th, 2023
At any jobsite or work area that is loud enough to need protection against hearing loss, there is one thing that they all have in common. Almost all of these places have used or currently use earplugs to protect their employees against hearing loss over time.
3M is a strong manufacturer of products like ear plugs, as well as a host of other items. Just like any other product, 3M has different types of earplugs that it manufactures, which fit into different environments and for the level of protection needed.
As a provider of military earplugs, these 3M earplugs have been relied upon by hundreds of thousands of military personnel to protect their hearing from permanent damage. Currently these earplugs have been shown to be defective, to the point where many military personnel have been left suffering from unnecessary and permanent tinnitus and hearing loss, causing a severe service-related disability.
What are 3M Earplugs?
The 3M earplugs that are in the headlines of the news right now are the 3M Military Dual-Ended Combat Arms Earplugs. For a service member, earplugs are extremely important, and some would say that they are as important as a helmet or other protective gear.
Because these earplugs proved to have a design flaw that was not disclosed to the government, the 3M Earplug Lawsuit has been enacted to offer compensation to the military employees that have suffered due to 3M’s design flaw and lack of disclosure.
Can Earplugs Damage Your Hearing?
Earplugs themselves do not cause damage to hearing on their own. If they are used to protect hearing and they are defective, then that’s a different issue all together.
What earplugs do, and are meant to do, is to dull and filter out noises that are loud enough to cause damage to the fragile inner ear anatomy. They protect the ear so they don’t have to take on more than the allowable amount of noise to cause damage.
What is Tinnitus?
Tinnitus is commonly described as a sensation in the ears that could sound like ringing, hissing, clicking, buzzing, or another noise in one or both the ears. People that are affected with this condition hear the sound in their own way, so it tends to be very individual to each person.
What makes tinnitus interesting is that it is not caused by an external sound… other people can’t hear it. The sound comes completely from within one’s own head or ears.
So is it a real sound?
To the person suffering from tinnitus, it is not only very real, but can also be very difficult to live with. And the worst part about tinnitus is that it is permanent. There is no cure at this time, although there are a few tricks available to help mask the sound and offer some relief.
About 10% to 15% of the population have experienced some level of tinnitus. But what causes tinnitus?
Tinnitus can be caused from an underlying condition such as an ear injury, natural aging, or even a circulatory issue.
Tinnitus affects everyone differently. The noise tends to vary from person to person, not only because of what it sounds like, but also in how loud it is. For some, it is constantly present and for others, it comes and goes. Some people would consider tinnitus to be an annoyance, while others would say that it is debilitating.
Can Earplugs Cause Permanent Tinnitus?
As a safety device, one would expect that earplugs would always be safe to use. And for the most part, they are. But just like everything else, there are some potential side effects to using them.
If earplugs are used improperly or if they are defective, they can cause more harm to one’s hearing than good.
Can Earplugs Make Tinnitus Worse?
Unfortunately, earplugs can make tinnitus worse if they are used improperly or over-used. Another possibility is that earplugs can push wax farther into the ear canal, which causes an overabundance of ear wax impacted deep in the ear. This is also a common reason for hearing difficulties, changes, or tinnitus.
How Does Tinnitus Affect Everyday Life?
For the people that suffer from tinnitus regularly, depending upon the severity, day-to-day can be hugely affected. It can cause sleep issues because the noise doesn’t stop when it is bedtime. It can cause anxiety or concentration issues. At its most severe, tinnitus can even cause depression or suicidal thoughts.
When you think about it, it really does make sense why tinnitus would cause such serious issues. For most people who hear the normal amount of noise, it’s really impossible to understand. But consider this… what if you constantly heard noise in your ears? What if it was an unpleasant noise? Would it bother you?
What Happened to the 3M Military Earplugs?
The 3M Military Dual-Ended Combat Arms Earplugs were found to be too short in design to adequately protect someone from damage to their hearing. This design flaw also contributed to permanent damage to the nerves and hair follicles of the inner ear.
What is the 3M Military Lawsuit?
The 3M military lawsuit is hot news right now, and rightfully so. Almost 300,000 United States military personnel are currently in the process of suing 3M over defective earplugs, which caused severe hearing impairment, tinnitus, or even deafness.
The product under fire is the dual-ended 3M Combat Arms earplugs. The lawsuit claims that the earplugs were defective and not sealed adequately to protect a soldier’s hearing. Because of the design flaw, hundreds of thousands of soldiers and personnel were subjected to an unsafe level of noise while working for the government.
What is the Average 3M Earplug Lawsuit Payout?
As always, compensation depends upon the individual circumstances for the 3M Earplug Lawsuit. At this point in time, the settlement amount will likely be between $5,000 and $250,000, depending upon the unique facts with each case and the severity of the injury.
Having the right lawyer in your corner can make the difference in what kind of compensation you can receive for dealing with severe hearing issues caused by the lack of disclosure. We are available for a 100% free consultation to discuss your case. Give us a call!