Sleeping With Earplugs – Is It Helpful or Harmful?

Does the street noise penetrate your bedroom loudly or does your partner snore so loudly that it is difficult for you to fall asleep yourself? There are some noises that make you sleep poorly . If the windows are closed, there is hardly any way to escape the noise .

In order to find a peaceful sleep , you might come up with the idea of using earplugs . You simply put this in the ear canal and in this way create a quiet environment for you.

Is it healthy to sleep with earplugs every night and what should you watch out for ?

First of all, it is helpful to introduce the different types of earplugs . Because the properties and wearing comfort change depending on the material .


Modern versions made of silicone can be matched to your ear canal . The hardness can also be varied so that you can use it for any sleeping position Lying on the side , softer versions are available , while harder silicone earplugs ensure a better hold for back sleep. The silicone is easy to clean and therefore these versions can be used for everyday use.


What leads to a comfortable sleep in the mattress is not necessarily pleasant in the ear. Foam earplugs are one of the cheapest options. Most of them are disposable ear plugs that you should dispose of after use. Therefore, these versions are only suitable to occasionally protect you from the noisy neighbors.


Similar to silicone, the wax is also flexible. Usually the material is heated and inserted into the ear canal. There it hardens and gives a perfect shape. The noises are optimally faded out and the noise suppressed. However, the wax earplugs can leave deposits in the ear and they require a lot of maintenance .


Which variant you choose to sleep better is up to you. Simple versions made of foam are available for travel, for example, in a very comfortable and inexpensive way. For longer-term solutions , models made of silicone are the more comfortable choice and better shield the noise.

Sleep disorders can be traced back to various causes. Usually the stress is partly responsible for the fact that you fall asleep worse and that you wake up more often at night.

Too little exercise and light can also affect sleep. If it is too bright in the bedroom or if you still use your smartphone in the evening, the sleep hormone melatonin is not produced in sufficient quantities. Therefore, it is generally advisable to follow sleep hygiene in order to resolve sleep problems.

However, there are influencing factors that are beyond your control and have a negative effect on sleep. The noise is perceived as threatening and annoying.

In fact, wearing earplugs can improve sleep. In one study , sleeping glasses were used in addition to hearing protection. As a result, the subjects slept longer and had less to contend with the symptoms of lack of sleep .

If the neighbors are loud, your partner snores or if your apartment is right next to a busy street, earplugs for sleeping are a good idea. They shield the ears from the background noise and ensure a deeper calm.


On the other hand, voices are repeatedly heard warning against wearing the earplugs at night. There could be a habituation effect so that you could no longer sleep without this protection. Is there anything to this claim and how dangerous is it to wear the earplugs?

In principle, it is not harmful to use the earplugs every day. When used correctly, they do not impair the ear canal and do not lead to more frequent inflammations or infections. However, it is important that sufficient hygiene is observed. Therefore, the earplugs should be cleaned after each use.

The habituation effect, however, should not be neglected. If you use the earplugs every night, you will find it difficult to do without them again. Without protection, you will perceive the surrounding noises much more strongly and sleep will be even more impaired. Therefore, the recommendation is to sleep with the earplugs only in exceptional cases. If the neighbors are having a loud party or a construction site creates noise in the evening, shelter is useful temporarily. However, if you use it for too long, you will find it difficult to sleep in a normal ambient volume again.

There is also the risk that you will miss your alarm clock. To be able to perceive this anyway, you increase the volume and possibly disturb the neighbors on your part. In this case, it is better to use alarm clocks that wake you up either with a bright light or with vibrations .


Basically, there is nothing wrong with using earplugs regularly for sleeping. However, you should observe the following rules in order not to endanger the health of your ears .

Daily cleaning

If you use the earplugs every night to be able to sleep better, daily cleaning is necessary. You can use lukewarm water and soap for this on most models.

Professional ear cleaning

If you use the plugs regularly, deposits can build up in the ear canal . To be on the safe side, it is advisable to visit the ENT doctor more often and to carry out a professional ear cleaning. Such maintenance is appropriate approximately every 6 months.

Earplugs must be dry

If you have just cleaned them, you have to wait until the earplugs are completely dry before inserting them. Otherwise, you increase the risk of infection and suffer from otitis media more often.


Earplugs are just one way of suppressing your partner’s snoring and reducing the exposure to decibels. You can also try the following tools to create a more comfortable sleeping environment.


A good way to make the background noise more pleasant is the white noise device . With this You produce either a noise or n Utzt the noise of a vacuum cleaner in order to superimpose noise. Such models are also ideal for your baby to create a more comfortable environment.


If you don’t just want to hide your surroundings, but want to use music or a radio play to fall asleep , there are special sleep headphones for this purpose . These either work like classic in-ear headphones or look like a headband. You can also use the “headband” as a sleeping mask, so that you can protect yourself wonderfully from external stimuli.


A somewhat simpler variant instead of the white noise is the fan . This creates an even sound that helps many people fall asleep . Make sure that you are not directly in the draft and the fan will not pose any danger while sleeping .


If your sleeping environment is too loud , earplugs are a great way to block out the noise. You can use them regularly, but you have to pay attention to the habituation effect .

Clean the earplugs after each use and sometimes sleep without these aids. Then there is nothing wrong with this support during sleep.

Jamie Clark

Hello, I’m Jamie Clark, 32 years old, and I have been living in the USA for a few years.
Since I was a child, I have suffered from a house dust allergy, severely affecting me. I felt the effects both while exercising and while sleeping. Constant sneezing after getting up and difficult breathing were the consequences. The allergy has also developed into asthma, which is still a sporting restriction today.

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