More than 360 million people have disabling hearing loss, according to February 2013 released by the United Nations World Health Organization (WHO). Unfortunately, a large majority of those who need hearing help fail to do so.
Hearing loss population is growing. Here are some startling facts about hearing loss to consider:
- Approximately 12 percent of the U.S. population – 38 million Americans – have a significant hearing loss. (Center for Hearing and Communication)
- According to the Better Hearing Institute, 65% of people with hearing loss are below age 65.
- One in every three people over the age of 65 – a total of 165 million people worldwide – lives with hearing loss. (WHO)
- 50 million people in the United States experience tinnitus. (American Tinnitus Association) Tinnitus is ringing in the ears.
- Of these, about 16 million have severe enough tinnitus to seek medical attention. About two million patients are so seriously debilitated that they cannot function on a “normal,” day-to-day basis. (ATA)
- Hearing loss and tinnitus are the #1 and #2 most prevalent war wounds. According to Jennifer Fink RN, Contributing Writer, MedPage Today May 25, 2014
- 60% of veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan come home with hearing loss and tinnitus.
- 32 million people affected by hearing loss are children under the age of 15. (WHO) One in 5 teenagers has hearing loss. This study was published in 2010, so the numbers are probably higher today
- People with hearing loss wait an average of seven years before seeking help. (Center for Hearing and Communication)
- Noise is the leading cause of hearing Loss. (NY Times Personal Health Blog)
- 30 million Americans are exposed to dangerous noise levels every day. (American-Speech-Language -Hearing Association)
- A 12-year study conducted by the neurology department at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine found that untreated hearing loss increased the risk for dementia.
- Only one out of every five people who could benefit from a hearing aid actually wear one. (National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders)
Question I have for you is how do you/we help raise awareness of hearing loss prevention? Hearing loss is linked to many health problems. We need to do something about this growing heath concern.