Hearing loss facts and statistics

Common questions and answers regarding hearing loss

If you have a hearing loss, you are not alone. Hearing loss is a much more common condition than you might think.

Who gets hearing loss?

According to the American Academy of Audiology, hearing impairment is the third most commonly reported chronic problem affecting the aged population, but hearing loss can occur at any time in life. Sixty five percent of people with hearing loss are below the retirement age and 1.1 billion young people (ages 12-35 years) are at risk of hearing loss due to exposure to noise in recreational settings.

What is the most common type of hearing loss?

Noise-induced hearing damage (NIHL) is the most prevalent type of hearing loss, and it can happen at any age. NIHL is caused by continuous exposure to loud sounds, such as jackhammers on a work site, or recreational activities, such as attending loud concerts and listening to music through ear buds. It may also occur after a one-time exposure to an intense sound like an explosion. The effects of NIHL are usually gradual but permanent. 

Does everyone with tinnitus have hearing loss?

Tinnitus and hearing loss tend to go hand in hand, with 4-5 people experiencing both conditions. Loud noise exposure can also cause tinnitus in one or more ears. Learn more about tinnitus here.


What health risks are associated with untreated hearing loss?

Hearing aid users tend to wait, on average, 10 years before getting help for hearing loss. During that time, communication becomes more difficult and individuals are at greater risk of developing anxiety, depression, social isolation, and poorer overall health.
Hearing loss can frequently coexist with health issues, such as dementia, diabetes, and cardiovascular diseases.

Do hearing aids cure hearing loss?

Hearing aids cannot cure hearing loss, but they can improve the quality of your hearing so that you can more easily listen and speak. According to the Better Hearing Institute, 8 out of 10 hearing aid users say they’re satisfied with the changes that have occurred in their lives specifically due to their hearing aids.


What do I do if myself or a loved one is experiencing signs of hearing loss? 

Hearing loss is a health issue that may require medical attention so it is important not to ignore it. If you suspect you have hearing loss, or were recently diagnosed, accepting hearing loss and taking action early can dramatically improve your quality of life. Schedule a free hearing screening with your nearest Beltone hearing care professional as soon as possible.

 

Global statistics on hearing loss

  • Hearing loss affects more than 360 million people worldwide, that’s over 5% of world’s population*
  • By 2025 there will be 900 million people in the world living with hearing loss
  • Every 10th person in the United States has a hearing loss – that’s over 31,000,000 people
  • There are more than 200,000 new cases of hearing loss per year in US alone
  • Twenty nine percent of people over age 65 have a hearing loss
  • One in six people between the ages of 41-59 has some degree of hearing loss
  • Every 6th baby boomer (ages 41-59) has hearing loss
  • Sixty five percent of people with hearing loss are below the retirement age
  • 1.1 billion young people (ages 12-35 years) are at risk of hearing loss due to exposure to noise in recreational settings

Download hearing loss infographic

Surprising facts about hearing loss

  • We hear with our brain, not with our ears. When we have a hearing loss, the connections in the brain that respond to sound get disorganized
  • Hearing loss can occur at any time in life
  • Noise-induced hearing loss is the most prevalent type of hearing loss, followed by age-related hearing loss
  • 4 out of 5 people who experience ringing in the ears, known as tinnitus,  will likely have some degree of hearing loss
  • Hearing loss can frequently co-exist with other health conditions, such as dementia, diabetes, heart and cardiovascular diseases
  • Unaddressed hearing loss can lead to social isolation, anxiety and even depression,  as well as poorer overall health
  • Eight out of 10 hearing aid users say they’re satisfied with the changes that have occurred in their lives specifically due to their hearing aids.**

* World Health Organization 
**Better Hearing Institute

Take the first step toward better hearing

Hearing loss is a health issue that may require medical attention, so it is important not to ignore it. If you suspect or have been diagnosed with hearing loss, accepting hearing loss and taking action early can dramatically improve your quality of life. Schedule a free hearing screening with your nearest Beltone hearing care professional as soon as possible.
Request an appointment
Beltone hearing care professional.

Want to know more about the ear?

Do you have additional questions about the ear anatomy?  Would you like to know more about hearing loss, or get a free hearing screening to assess your level of hearing loss?  A Beltone hearing care professional can help!

Hearing loss and dementia

Did you know that the risk of dementia increases among those with a hearing loss greater than 25 decibels?
Learn more

Learn warning signs of hearing loss

Symptoms can vary from person to person. 
Learn more

Hearing loss in both ears

Can you get away with just one hearing aid?
Learn more