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Dru Coleman,
EPIC Hearing Healthcare
  • 877-606-3742 Ext 2149
  • dcoleman@epichearing.com


Susan English,
Havas PR
  • 412-456-0867
  • susan.english@havasww.com

Hearing Loss Facts & Figures

Who Has Hearing Loss?

  • Older people are at higher risk, but hearing loss is common across ages.
  • One in six people (ages 18-44) have diagnosed hearing loss.
  • Men are affected more than women.
  • Children are at risk, too.  In just 8 years, there was a 30% increase in adolescent hearing loss.
  • Your job could be hard on your hearing.  Law enforcement personnel and teachers are among many professionals at higher risk.

Here are some general guidelines regarding the incidence of hearing loss:

  • 3 in 10 people over age 60 have hearing loss.
  • 1 in 6 baby boomers (born between 1946 and 1964), or 14.6%, have a hearing problem.
  • 1 in 14 Generation Xers (born between 1965 and 1981), or 7.4%, already have hearing loss.
  • At least 1.4 million children (18 or younger) have hearing problems.
  • It is estimated that 3 in 1,000 infants are born with serious to profound hearing loss.

Source: Hearingpedia. (n.d.). Prevalence of Hearing Loss. Retrieved from Better Hearing Institute website on January 23, 2014 http://www.betterhearing.org/hearingpedia/prevalence-hearing-loss

How Big is the Problem of Hearing Loss?

Almost one-third (30 percent) of employees suspect they have a hearing problem, but have not sought treatment.  The national survey of 1,500 full-time employed Americans and nearly 500 benefits professionals also showed that, of those with untreated hearing loss, nearly all (95 percent) report that this hearing loss impacts them on the job.

Source: Online employee survey conducted by Wakefield Research on behalf of EPIC Hearing Healthcare between November 22 and December 13, 2013, among 1,500 nationally representative full-time employed Americans 18+, including oversamples of sub-audiences of up to 101 Hispanics, 110 African-Americans, 100 Asian-Americans, 169 teachers and 100 law enforcement professionals (all employed full-time).

Online employer survey conducted by Source Media on behalf of EPIC Hearing Healthcare December 2013 among 493 benefits professionals.

What are the Consequences of Hearing Loss?

People lose around $1,000 in income for every 10% increase in hearing loss.

Source:  The Impact of Untreated Hearing Loss on Household Income, a study by Sergei Kochkin, Ph.D. published by Better Hearing Institute in August 2005.

http://www.hearing.org/uploadedFiles/Content/impact_of_untreated_hearing_loss_on_income.pdf

According to the Better Hearing Institute, studies have linked untreated hearing loss to:

  • Irritability, negativism and anger
  • Avoidance or withdrawal from social situations
  • Social rejection and loneliness
  • Reduced alertness and increased risk to personal safety
  • Impaired memory and ability to learn new tasks
  • Diminished psychological and overall health

Source: Hearingpedia. (n.d.). Consequences of Hearing Loss. Retrieved from Better Hearing Institute website on January 23, 2014 http://www.betterhearing.org/hearing_loss/consequences_of_hearing_loss/index.cfm.

Table 1: Do any of the following describe how your hearing loss impacts you on the job?

table01

Source: Online employee survey conducted by Wakefield Research on behalf of EPIC Hearing Healthcare between November 22 and December 13, 2013, among 1,500 nationally representative full-time employed Americans 18+, including oversamples of sub-audiences of up to 101 Hispanics, 110 African-Americans, 100 Asian-Americans, 169 teachers and 100 law enforcement professionals (all employed full-time).

Online employer survey conducted by Source Media on behalf of EPIC Hearing Healthcare December 2013 among 493 benefits professionals.

What do Americans Believe About the Cost of Hearing Aids?

Table 2: Which of the following is/are true about the cost of hearing aids? (Multiple responses allowed.)

table02

Source: See source for Table 1 above.

What Can You Do?

  • Turn down the sound!  Limit your noise exposure and wear hearing protection when you can’t.
  • Practice healthy-hearing habits.  Less than one in four had their hearing checked in the past two years.  Only one in five people who could benefit from having a hearing aid wears one.
  • Make sure you’re covered.  Hearing aids can cost thousands, yet are rarely covered by standard medical insurance.
  • Find out about hearing health insurance and remember to use your HSA or FSA-hearing aids are eligible expenses.

Source: See source for Table 1 above.

Quick Statistics About Hearing Impairment and Loss

Compiled by the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders

  • Men are more likely to experience hearing loss than women.
  • Of adults ages 65 and older in the United States, 12.3 percent of men and nearly 14 percent of women are affected by tinnitus. Tinnitus is identified more frequently in white individuals and the prevalence of tinnitus is almost twice as frequent in the South as in the Northeast.
  • Approximately 17 percent (36 million) of American adults report some degree of hearing loss.
  • There is a strong relationship between age and reported hearing loss: 18 percent of American adults 45-64 years old, 30 percent of adults 65-74 years old, and 47 percent of adults 75 years old or older have a hearing loss.
  • About 2 to 3 out of every 1,000 children in the United States are born deaf or hard-of-hearing. Nine out of every 10 children who are born deaf are born to parents who can hear.
  • The NIDCD estimates that approximately 15 percent (26 million) of Americans between the ages of 20 and 69 have high frequency hearing loss due to exposure to loud sounds or noise at work or in leisure activities.
  • Only 1 out of 5 people who could benefit from a hearing aid actually wears one.
  • Three out of 4 children experience ear infection (otitis media) by the time they are 3 years old.
  • Roughly 25 million Americans have experienced tinnitus.
  • Approximately 188,000 people worldwide have received cochlear implants. In the United States, roughly 41,500 adults and 25,500 children have received them.
  • Approximately 4,000 new cases of sudden deafness occur each year in the United States. Hearing loss affects only 1 ear in 9 out of 10 people who experience sudden deafness. Only 10 to 15 percent of patients with sudden deafness know what caused their loss.
  • Approximately 615,000 individuals have been diagnosed with Ménière’s disease in the United States. Another 45,500 are newly diagnosed each year.
  • Approximately 3 to 6 percent of all deaf children and perhaps another 3 to 6 percent of hard-of-hearing children have Usher syndrome. In developed countries such as the United States, about 4 babies in every 100,000 births have Usher syndrome.
  • One out of every 100,000 individuals per year develops an acoustic neuroma (vestibular schwannoma).

Source: Compiled by the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD), a part of the National Institutes of Health, which is a division of the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services.  Retrieved from the NICDC website on April 26, 2014: http://www.nidcd.nih.gov/health/statistics/Pages/quick.aspx