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Statistics & Causes of Hearing Loss

Statistics about Hearing Loss


Many people suffer from hearing loss. In fact, the latest available statistics show that over 10% of the U.S. population report difficulty hearing! That's over 31.5 million people. And, as the Baby Boomer generation continues to age, that number promises to increase dramatically.

Are you one of those millions of people who do not hear as well as they once did? If so, you are certainly not alone. Consider these statistics reported by Sergei Kochkin, Ph.D., Former Executive Director of the Better Hearing Institute:

• 3 in 10 people over age 60 have hearing loss.

• 1 in 6 baby boomers (1946-1964), or 14.6%, have a hearing problem.

• 1 in 14 Generation Xers (1965-1980), 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.

In addition, studies have linked untreated hearing loss to emotional, physical, mental, psychological and even economic disadvantages! And, to make matters even worse, there are many “myths” about hearing loss that prevent those with hearing loss from doing anything about it. 

Causes of Hearing Loss


One of the most common “myths” about hearing loss is that only “old people” suffer from it! In fact, the reverse is true! The majority (65%) of people with hearing loss are younger than 65 and six million people in the U.S. between 18 and 44 suffer from hearing loss (Better Hearing Institute website).

The truth is that there are several causes of hearing loss with “exposure to noise” ranking high among the reasons. The primary causes of hearing loss are:

  • Exposure to noise

  • Occupational

  • Earbuds/headphones

  • Firearms

  • Power tools

  • Medicines

  • Smoking

  • Disease

  • Diabetes

  • Sickle cell anemia

  • Head trauma

Signs of Hearing Loss

You should contact us as soon as possible if you’ve experienced any of these signs or symptoms.

  • You have difficulty understanding group conversations.

  • Others have to loudly repeat what they’ve just said to you.

  • Family or friends complain about the volume at which you watch TV or listen to the radio.

  • Family members argue with you about your possible hearing loss.

  • You avoid social activities because you worry about being able to hear other people.

  • Soft speech or whispering is difficult to hear.

  • You hear, but don’t always understand, what other people say.

  • People seem to mumble or speak too softly to you.

  • You find you hear better when you can see a person’s face.

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