Hearing loss is presently a public health problem and scientists believe that it will become a lot more common for individuals in their 20’s to be using hearing aids.
When you consider severe hearing loss, thoughts of elderly people might come to mind. But all age groups have had a recent increase in hearing loss over the past few years. Hearing loss obviously isn’t an aging issue it’s a growing epidemic and the rising instances among all age groups demonstrates this.
Scientists predict that in the next 40 years, hearing loss cases will double among adults 20 and older. This is seen as a public health concern by the healthcare community. One in five people is, according to John Hopkins medical research, having a hard time communicating due to severe hearing loss.
Hearing loss is rising amongst all age groups and here is why experts think that is.
Hearing Loss Can Lead to Additional Health Issues
Serious hearing loss is a terrible thing to cope with. Day-to-day communication becomes challenging, frustrating, and fatiguing. Individuals can frequently withdraw from their family and friends and stop doing the things they love. If you don’t get help, it’s nearly impossible to be active while suffering from severe hearing loss.
Individuals who have untreated hearing loss have problems with more than diminished hearing. They’re also more likely to experience the following
- Other acute health conditions
- Injuries from repeated falls
- Cognitive decline
They’re also more likely to have difficulties with their personal relationships and might have challenges getting basic needs met.
people who experience hearing loss are affected in their personal lives and could also have increased:
- Disability rates
- Healthcare expenses
- Accident rates
- Needs for public assistance
- Insurance costs
These factors reveal that hearing loss is a significant challenge we need to combat as a society.
Why Are Numerous Generations Encountering Increased Hearing Loss?
The current increase in hearing loss can be attributed to several factors. One factor is the increased incidence of common diseases that can lead to hearing loss, including:
- Poor diet and a lack of regular exercise
- Anxiety and unmanaged stress
- High blood pressure
- Cardiovascular disease
More individuals are experiencing these and associated conditions at younger ages, which adds to additional hearing loss.
Lifestyle also plays a major role in the increased occurrence of hearing loss. In recreational and work areas particularly, 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 frequently the younger age groups who have the highest level of noise exposure in:
- Bars, clubs, and concerts
- Shooting ranges
Moreover, many people are turning the volume of their music up to dangerous volumes and are wearing earbuds. And a larger number of individuals are now making use of painkillers, either to manage chronic pain or recreationally. Prolonged, regular use of opiates, ibuprofen, acetaminophen, and aspirin have also been associated with an increased 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 end this upward trend by educating the public on hearing loss such as:
- Risk factors
- Treatment possibilities
Individuals are being prompted by these organizations to:
- Recognize their level of hearing loss risk
- Use their hearing aids
- Get their hearing evaluated earlier in their lives
Any delays in these actions make the impact of hearing loss substantially worse.
Scientists, healthcare providers, and government organizations are seeking solutions. They’re also seeking ways to bring hearing-loss associated costs down. This will help increase accessibility to state-of-the-art hearing technologies that significantly enhance lives.
Broad strategies are being formulated by the World Health Organization (WHO) and other organizations as well as scientists. Reducing the danger of hearing loss in underserved groups is being tackled with health services, education, and awareness.
Among their contributions, they’ve developed research-based guidelines for communities, which help local leaders recognize the health affects of noise. They work with communities to decrease resident’s noise exposure and instruct them on what safe levels of noise are. They’re also advancing research into how hearing loss is raised with the use and abuse of opiates.
What You Can do?
Keep yourself informed because hearing loss is a public health issue. Share practical information with others and take action to slow the development of your own hearing loss.
Have your own hearing tested if you believe you’re experiencing hearing loss. If you discover you need hearing aids, make sure you wear them.
Avoiding hearing loss is the ultimate goal. You’re helping others who have hearing loss realize that they’re not alone when you wear your hearing aids. You’re bringing awareness about the problem of hearing loss in your community. Policies, attitudes, and actions will then be changed by this awareness.