Hearing is one of our most critical senses when it comes to our ability to communicate, and even small degrees of hearing loss can have profound effects on how we interact with others. Being separated from that ability not only has consequences for our social lives; it can have physical effects, as well. As hearing care professionals, we have a great deal of work to do, and part of our job, is educating people about hearing loss. That’s why we’ve put together 10 facts about hearing loss you probably don’t know.
10 Interesting Facts about Hearing Loss
- Hearing loss is the third most common health problem in the US, after arthritis and heart disease.
- Nearly 50 million Americans experience hearing loss; that’s about 1 out of every 5 Americans.
- Ringing in the ears (tinnitus) affects approx. 20% of Americans, and hearing loss occurs in approx. 90% of these cases.
- Noise is the leading cause of hearing loss. Excessive noise in the workplace is a crucial factor of noise-induced hearing loss, with many people being exposed to loud noises everyday for years.
- Hearing loss in teens is growing with the increased use of earbuds and headphones, among other factors; approx. 1 in 5 teens has hearing loss.
- Hearing loss can lead to cognitive decline. Several studies have demonstrated links between hearing loss and cognitive decline, impaired memory, and even an enhanced risk of developing dementia.
- A large percentage of Americans who suffer from hearing loss can benefit from hearing aids, and despite this fact, fewer than 1 out of every 3 Americans actually use them, despite all of the technological advances.
- Hearing loss can be genetic; roughly 30-50% of hearing loss is due to genetic factors.
- There are tiny hairs in your ears that play a huge part in the hearing process. These tiny hairs are sensorineural cells, and damage to them means damage to your hearing because they do not grow back.
- Ears are not just for hearing. The vestibular system in your inner ear is also responsible for balance and spatial orientation.
If you or a loved one would like to speak with an experienced hearing care professional about hearing loss or would like to get a comprehensive hearing evaluation, contact us at Hearing Solutions, Inc and make an appointment.