Hearing loss is presently a public health concern and scientists think that it will become a lot more common for individuals in their 20’s to be wearing hearing aids.
When you think of extreme hearing loss, thoughts of elderly people might come to mind. But over the past few years, there has been a spike in hearing loss impacting all age groups. Hearing loss obviously isn’t an aging problem it’s an increasing epidemic and the rising cases among all age groups demonstrates this.
With adults 20 and up, scientists predict that hearing loss will increase by 40%. This is seen as a public health issue by the healthcare community. According to John Hopkins medical researchers, one in five people is currently suffering from hearing loss so extreme it makes communication challenging.
Hearing loss is increasing among all age groups and here is why experts think that is.
Hearing Loss Can Trigger Additional Health Problems
It’s a terrible thing to have to endure serious hearing loss. Communication is aggravating, exhausting, and challenging every day. It can cause people to stop doing what they love and withdraw from family and friends. When you’re enduring severe hearing loss, it will be impossible to be active without seeking help.
It’s not only diminished hearing that people with untreated hearing loss are afflicted by. They’re also more likely to experience the following
- Injuries from repeated falls
- Cognitive decline
- Other severe health conditions
They’re also more likely to have difficulties with their personal friendships and may have challenges getting basic needs met.
Along with the impact on their personal lives, individuals experiencing hearing loss might face increased:
- Insurance costs
- Healthcare costs
- Disability rates
- Accident rates
- Needs for public support
These factors indicate that hearing loss is a significant challenge we should fight as a society.
Why Are Numerous Generations Encountering Increased Hearing Loss?
There are several factors contributing to the present rise in hearing loss. The increased cases of some common diseases that cause hearing loss is one factor, including:
- Cardiovascular disease
- High blood pressure
- Anxiety and unmanaged stress
- Poor diet and a lack of consistent exercise
More individuals are suffering from these and associated conditions at earlier ages, which leads to further hearing loss.
Increased prevalence of hearing loss also has a great deal to do with lifestyle. In work and recreational areas in particular, it’s becoming more common to be exposed to loud noise. We’re being exposed to loud noises and music in more places and modern technology is getting louder. It’s often the younger people who have the highest level of noise exposure in:
- Shooting ranges
- Bars, clubs, and concerts
Furthermore, many people are choosing to wear earbuds and crank their music up to harmful levels. And more individuals are treating pain with painkillers or using them recreationally. Long-term, frequent use of opiates, ibuprofen, acetaminophen, and aspirin have also been linked to a higher danger of hearing loss.
How is Society Responding to Hearing Loss as a Health Crisis?
Local, national, and world organizations have taken notice. They’re doing work to prevent this upward trend by educating the public on hearing loss such as:
- Treatment possibilities
- Risk factors
Individuals are being prompted by these organizations to:
- Get their hearing checked earlier in their lives
- Wear their hearing aids
- Recognize their level of hearing loss risk
Hearing loss will worsen with any delay in these measures.
Solutions are being looked for by government organizations, healthcare providers, and researchers. They’re also seeking ways to bring hearing-loss related costs down. Advanced hearing technology will be increased and lives will be substantially enhanced.
Broad strategies are being formulated by the World Health Organization (WHO) and other organizations as well as scientists. They are combining education, awareness, and health services to reduce the risk of hearing loss in underserved groups.
Local leaders are being made aware of the health impact of noise by being given researched-based guidelines for communities. They explain what safe noise exposure is, and help communities reduce noise exposure for residents. They’re also advancing research into how hearing loss is raised with the use and abuse of opiates.
Can You do Anything?
Stay informed as hearing loss is a public health issue. Share useful information with others and take action to slow the advancement of your own hearing loss.
If you suspect you may be dealing with hearing loss, have your hearing examined. If you discover you need hearing aids, be sure to wear them.
Avoiding hearing loss is the main goal. You’re helping others who have hearing loss understand that they’re not alone when you wear your hearing aids. You’re bringing awareness about the problem of hearing loss in your community. This awareness has the power to transform attitudes, policies, and actions.