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Hearing Loss Facts

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When it comes to hearing loss, myths abound. Many people believe it is a condition that affects only the elderly, or that everybody with a hearing loss is aware of their handicap. These beliefs, and others, are wrong.

  • Hearing loss is the third most common health condition in the U.S., behind arthritis and heart disease.
  • 17% of the adult population suffers from some degree of hearing loss. That’s 36 million Americans.
  • Hearing loss isn’t just confined to older people. More than half of those suffering from a hearing loss are younger than the age of 65.
  • By age 65, one out of three people suffer from a hearing loss. That number jumps to one out of two by age 75.
  • An estimated 30 school-aged children out of 1000 have a hearing loss.
  • The most common causes of hearing loss in adults are noise exposure and aging.
  • Age-related hearing loss usually develops gradually. Many adults are not even aware of the impairment until it has reached an advanced stage. There is no cure for this type of hearing loss.
  • Noise-induced hearing loss may develop slowly, or appear suddenly, without warning. Causes include listening to loud music and working in a noisy environment.
  • Tinnitus (ringing in the ears) often accompanies the hearing loss, and can be every bit as bothersome.