My hearing has been gone from the army for a many years now. I wear protection when bench shooting. I don’t know how this post got so far off track, it was about an encore pistol kicking my butt. I do thank youIf you keep shooting without ear protection you won't be able to hear either. Plus your autonomic nervous system will anticipate the muzzle blast and your body will automatically develop a flinch!!! I had a 7mm-08 (Browning micro-medallion) with a muzzle break on it, it was the noisiest rifle I ever owned. Less recoil, yes by all means, but........muzzle blast was terrible. I have a 23% hearing loss in both ears from shooting at an early age (60 years ago) without ear protection, now almost as deaf as an anvil. Vanity prevents me from getting hearing aids. I know some people hunt with ear protection, however I do not hunt it on, but...............this is he only time that my ears do get exposed to muzzle blast.