For some people, waking up with ringing ears is an annoyance. For me, though, anything that interferes with my hearing also interferes with my work. Which is why I haven't been to a rock concert without earplugs in over a decade.
Nor am I the only one wearing them. Look around next time you're at a show, and you'll probably notice that virtually everyone who works at the venue is wearing earplugs. (Shouldn't that tell you something?) Moreover, a fair number of rockers themselves keep plugged up while on stage, including big-name hard rockers like Ted Nugent (who for years only wore one plug, and now is partially deaf in the exposed ear) and Jani Lane of Warrant.
What kind should you wear? Robert Goldstein of Maryland Sound recommends earplugs which "look like screws," and can be found at rifle and sporting goods stores. "They screw into your ears, basically," he says. "They're very soft and very comfortable, and they cost about two or three dollars. They have a little carrying case for them. You clean them off after, and they last for years and years and years."