Facts are stranger than fiction. As you confront the fact that over 12% of the American population or 38 million Americans are hearing impaired, you certainly will be shocked. The even more bewildering fact is that only 25% of those affected, use hearing aids. This is because any level of deafness has the disadvantage of an undetectable disability. As we cannot see it, we ignore it.
The most common misconception is that deafness is a problem that occurs only in old age. It may be true to some extent, but unfortunately this struggle is not biased on any grounds. Yes, there might be different levels to it. The commonly recognized ones being Deafened people, Hard of Hearing People, acquired profound hearing loss, Hearing Loss/Hearing impaired. These terms are based on how much hearing disability a person is born with and how much is acquired later in life.
Being hearing impaired is a vicious cycle, as one doesn’t know or admit if she/he is impaired and hence there is no way to cure it. Some researches give an insight on, who are the most vulnerable to hearing loss. These insights could break many of our pre-conceived notions about deafness and hearing loss.
Age is certainly a significant factor that makes 45% adults over the age of 75 and 30% between the age of 65 and 74 hearing impaired. But that does not leave the younger generation immune, 18% between the age of 45 and 54 suffer hearing losses.20% above the age of 12 have hearing losses so profound that it impacts their capacity to communicate. This is a serious percentage, as even a minor hearing loss could result in missing out on 50% of classroom discussion for a child.
Studies also suggest that men are more susceptible to hearing loss than women. But the contradiction is that more young women seek hearing aids compared to young men. While in the old age, when the chances of hearing loss are equal, Men are 51% more probable to wear hearing aids. There has been a substantial research done in Johns Hopkins University related to race and hearing loss. The study reveals that African Americans are 3 times less likely to suffer hearing loss than Caucasians. This is because of a pigment called melanin produced in African Americans that prevents the danger.
Going by the study published in “Annals of Otology, Rhinology & Laryngology” in 2012, those who make low wages are more prone to hearing loss than those who make higher wages. Though there is no concrete evidence, but there are pretty striking associations.
The good news here is that there are some brands like Siemens that provide great hearing aids, which are as easy to use as counting on your fingers. Hearing aids have proven to offer dramatic improvements to most people with any kind of hearing loss. Siemens hearing aid dates way back to 1878, and is the pioneers in providing great hearing aids. They offer a varied range depending on age and backgrounds. Their product includes models like Aquarist, Motion, Nitro, Orion etc.
Hearing aids are always a solution, but like always said: “Prevention is better than cure”. Excessive noise is the major reason for damaging our ear drums and contributing to hearing loss. The younger generation needs to reduce the volumes of their personal sound polluters that is their MP3 players and other music players. Noisy subways or any other source of regular undesirable sound could result in permanent damage. Trying and avoiding the visible reasons, and helping others to understand this disability will surely make a difference.
Ernest Pooh founded The Hearing Centre Pet Ltd. The Hearing Centre is your one-stop Centre for complete hearing aids and hearing conservation services. Ernest has been fitting hearing devices since 2004.