How does self-care and truck driving overlap? No, we’re not going to tell you to do some meditating while you’re driving, but we might have a suggestion or two that’ll make long distance rides more enjoyable and connected.
Let's talk trucker headsets.
A trucker headset allows drivers—namely, truckers—to communicate with staff and team members to receive route updates or transmit messages. Also, these headsets let the driver seek help when necessary.
Beyond safety and navigation, trucker headsets also serve an important purpose: safety and health. Trucker headsets provide easy movement, GPS navigation, and even drown out background noise while communicating with teammates.
Another defining feature of trucker headsets? The open ear design is a stand-out feature for noise awareness and sense of environment. This allows the driver to take (and receive) calls while maintaining proper driving safety and awareness.
Now, trucker headsets are different from traditional headsets that you may use for office work. Trucker headsets are made with the express purpose for durability and stability on the road. Furthermore, trucker headsets offer a higher level of noise cancellation (typically in one ear) in comparison to regular earbuds or headsets.
That being said, are trucker headsets actually safe to wear? And, what if you wear hearing aids? Soundly’s lead audiologist, Dr. Amy Sarow, says “ Wearing a headset that reduces background noise can help in two ways: reducing the noise burden and helping to keep headset volume lower to prevent noise damage,” says Dr. Amy. “Keep in mind that most trucker headsets cover only one ear, usually the right ear. While this may make it easier to hear, as this side has less background exposure, the left ear will still be exposed to the road noise.”
What should you look for in a trucker headset?
So, you’re ready to start browsing, but what should you look for in a great trucker headset? Here are some points to keep in mind:
- Mic quality
- Battery life
The top two most important points? Comfort and mic quality. First, you’re going to be wearing this headset on long drives and for hours at a time. We kept comfort top of mind as we chose the products below.
Next up, is mic quality. And now the microphone quality is essential to receiving and making calls—the crispness and the clarity supports both ends of the conversation. Mic quality should be clear for the caller and the receiver on the other end of the line. We looked for products that can cut out background noise and deliver a clear signal to the listener on the other side.
Additionally, a good trucker headset should include strong noise cancelation, especially when you’re driving on the road, it’s important that the headset filters out background noise (like, traffic sounds) so that you can hear clearly.
Is it possible that a headset can filter out too much noise? According to Dr. Amy, “Most truck drivers drive long stretches of highway, which is generally safer than city driving. Headsets may reduce background noise, but when listening at the appropriate volume, sounds from an ambulance or emergency vehicle would still be audible.” The audibility challenge is usually solved by leaving one ear open (a defining feature of the products below).
How can I protect my ears while wearing a trucker headset?
Remember, listening safety is important. To start, always listen to calls and music at a safe volume (80 db or less). Dr. Amy also recommends listening at 60%-70% to protect your long term hearing.