How Loud Does a Working Environment Have to Be to Require Ear Defenders?

Those who work in a noisy environment can often find that they are subject to more that the simple rigours of working life. People who find themselves subjected to loud working conditions can often fall victim to hearing conditions, in both the short and the long term. To combat this, many regulations exist designed to encourage the use of hearing protection in such conditions. But attempting to figure out the volume limits is tough, and it can be hard to tell when a workplace moves beyond simply loud into the realm of too loud.

Whilst we often subject ourselves to loud noises for pleasure, during sporting events and rock concerts, finding yourself in a loud working environment can be a little different. As you will likely be spending a large portion of your working life in the same conditions, the measures taken to prevent hearing damage should be strenuous. The most common solution for those who find themselves subject to such conditions is to wear ear defenders. Worn over the outer ear, these devices are available in a number of colours and designs. Should they be required in the work place, your employer should be able to equip you with the right protection.

While many companies are aware of the high volume of the environment and will require you to wear protection, it might simply be a recommended practice in others. To determine whether the protection is necessary, ask yourself several questions:

Does the noise seem intrusive?

Do you need to raise your voice to talk to another person?

Are you part of an industry which is known for loud working conditions, such as construction or manufacturing?

If the answer to the above questions is yes, then it is likely that further steps may need to be taken. From a quantifiable standpoint, the volume levels are often measured and provisions are taken according to decibel measurements. At 80dB, employers are required to provide training and instruction on how to reduce risk, and need to make protective measures available. Those workplaces which are frequently subject to 85dB are expected to take measures to reduce exposure to loud noises and if the measures are unable to have an effect, then hearing protection is required. Any environment above 87dB is considered something to which an employee should not be exposed, taking into account protective measures.

If you find yourself at risk of hearing damage or are beginning to experience difficulty, it is recommended that you talk to your employer in order to reduce the exposure to loud working conditions.

Video Marketing For Traffic – Branding Your Videos, Your Business and Yourself

Ever heard of YouTube? Yeah, I thought so! Nearby, in January 2008 79 million users made over 3 billion video views (That's over 100 million views per day!) How would you like a slice of that kind of audience?

Video really has become popular on the web recently and it's easy to see why. It's unparallel by any other medium in terms of getting your message across. The problem with video online is that it has always been expensive to produce and host, requiring specialist equipment, expensive software, and massive bandwidth. Not any more because, since you can produce a screen capture video at zero cost (using Camstudio or similar software), and not only host it for free on YouTube, but also use it as a source of traffic!

You can not embed links in video on YouTube. What you can do however is put a link in the video description, create a profile or 'channel' with a link to your site, and brand your video with your domain.

Publishing and branding your videos

To get started, head over to YouTube.com and sign up for a free account. Your channel is automatically created for you based on your username (ie [http://www.youtube.com/username]) and once created you can customize it.

On your channel select 'Personal Profile' and there is a space to add your website URL. While you're there, fill out the rest of the profile too and upload a photo. Remember, YouTube is a social media site so you want to brand yourself, not just your business or products!

When you come to upload a video, use SEO practices. Remember that people will find your videos by searching, just like on Google, so use relevant keywords for your title, tags, and in your description. Also, your description can include a link to your site so long as you remember to include the http: // part! If you use a full URL the link will appear on the video page without the user having to click the 'more info' button!

While links in the description and on your profile are great, it's your video that people's attention will be on so get the URL in there! Start and end the video on a 'splash screen' with the video title and your domain clearly visible. You can also, depending on the nature and content of the video, use an overlay which shows your branding through the video!

While YouTube is far and away the king of online video, it's by no means the only site you can publish to. MetaCafe, HowCast and Blip.tv are just a few of the sites I use, but uploading to each of them takes time and effort. Do not worry though, help is at hand with a tool called TubeMogul.com

TubeMogul allows you to upload to all of these sites and more in one go, and even tracks all your views for you in one easy to use control panel. I recommend uploading to YouTube manually (so you get more control and can set the description etc. specifically for YouTube) and then use TubeMogul to upload to any other sites relevant to your niche. You can still use TubeMogul to track your YouTube views though!

Video on your own site

If you're creating video for a membership site, or a product then you will have to host it yourself to keep it private and secure. However, any videos that you're giving away are free to your visitors can also be hosted on YouTube. Just upload as normal, head to the video page and on the right hand side you'll see a box called EMBED with some HTML code (starts with

Maternity Clothes – Buying Maternity Clothes Online

Here is a sampling of the best maternity shops online. You'll unduly find one or several that match your budget and style! Remember to feel good it helps to look good, so why not indulge in a maternity outfit or two?

BabyStyle

http://www.babystyle.com

In this store you'll find maternity fashions at reasonable prices, with free shipping on large orders! Babystyle also offers a selection of what they call 'transition' maternity wear … clothes you can wear after the baby comes but before you are ready to fit back into your pre-pregnancy clothing!

Motherhood

http://www.motherhood.com

This is another great maternity stop for moms looking for well-priced maternity clothes for all seasons. Motherhood contains a comprehensive selection of maternity wear and nursing items for moms young and old alike.

Bella Blu

http://www.bellablumaternity.com

Designer maternity fashions for the fashion conscious mother. If you are looking for something hip and stylish, check here first!

Mom's Maternity

[http://www.momsmaternity.com]

This store features maternity clothes, lingerie and more for tall, petite and plus sized women.

A Pea in the Pod

http://www.apeainthepod.com

Slightly more expensive maternity clothes and accessories. Considered one of the more popular maternity outlets.

Mimi Maternity

[http://www.mimmaternity.com]

Fashionable maternity clothing for hip mothers everywhere.

Maternity Mall

http://www.maternitymall.com

Features maternity fashions from a variety of top label and designer maternity fashion providers.

Do not forget many traditional retailers also offer a wide selection of exceptional maternity wear and clothing. The stores listed below carry traditional and maternity clothes for fashion and budget conscious moms. Here are some other places you should consider when shopping for maternity wear:

Target – http://www.target.com

Old Navy – http://www.oldnavy.com

Gap – http://www.gap.com

If you are really looking to save dollars, you should consider buying second hand maternity wear online. E-bay is one of the world's largest online auction houses, and here you'll find literally thousands of choices when it comes to maternity wear. Most sellers will post pictures of the assorted clothing they have for sale, and very often you will find designer maternity items at a fraction of the cost a retailer would sell them for.

What to Buy?
Are you wondering what your maternity ward should contain? Although women have varying preferences and styles, there are a few items that every woman should have in her maternity wear closet. Among these include:

– Jeans

– Pair of black or khaki slacks

– One skirt or dress

– Variety of Maternity T's and Tops

– Maternity Bra

You may or may not have to buy maternity underwear. While some women find the support in these comforting, others find that traditional bikini underwear purchased a size or two larger than normal work just as well, and are less expensive and come in more colors and styles.

You will find that your breasts are growing through your pregnancy. A good maternity bra is recommended. You should buy a bra that allows a little room for expansion however, as your breasts will likely inflate even more when they fill with milk close to delivery.

Remember that as a pregnant woman you deserve to look and feel your best. Don 't hesitate for a moment to pamper yourself and purchase a few items that will not only help you look great, but will help you feel great during your pregnancy.