Scientists believe 20-somethings who wear hearing aids will soon become more prevalent as hearing loss is a public health concern.
When you consider severe hearing loss, thoughts of elderly people may 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 an increasing epidemic and the rising cases among all age groups demonstrates this.
Among adults 20 and older, scientists forecast that hearing loss will increase by 40%. The healthcare community views this as a significant public health problem. One in five individuals is, according to John Hopkins medical research, having a hard time communicating due to extreme hearing loss.
Hearing loss is rising among all age groups and here is why experts think that is.
Hearing Loss Can Lead to Additional Health Problems
Serious hearing loss is a terrible thing to cope with. Everyday communication becomes difficult, frustrating, and fatiguing. Individuals can often withdraw from their family and friends and stop doing the things they love. When you’re suffering from extreme hearing loss, it will be impossible to be active without seeking help.
It’s not only diminished hearing that people with neglected hearing loss are afflicted by. They’re also more likely to experience the following
- Other acute health conditions
- Cognitive decline
- Injuries from recurring falls
They’re also more likely to have difficulties with their personal relationships and might have challenges getting basic needs met.
Individuals who experience hearing loss are impacted in their personal lives and could also have increased:
- Insurance costs
- Needs for public assistance
- Disability rates
- Accident rates
- Healthcare costs
We need to fight hearing loss as a society because as these factors indicate, hearing loss is a real obstacle.
Why Are Multiple Generations Encountering Increased Hearing Loss?
There are numerous factors contributing to the present increase in hearing loss. One factor is the increased incidence of common diseases that can cause hearing loss, such as:
- Anxiety and unmanaged stress
- Poor diet and a lack of regular exercise
- High blood pressure
- Cardiovascular disease
More individuals are dealing with these and associated disorders at younger ages, which leads to additional hearing loss.
Lifestyle also plays a significant role in the increased incidence of hearing loss. In recreational and work areas in particular, it’s becoming more common to be exposed to loud sound. Modern technology is frequently loud, and we’re being exposed to loud music and other sounds in more places. Young people who frequent the following places have the highest degree of hearing loss:
- Shooting ranges
- Bars, clubs, and concerts
Also, many people are turning the volume of their music up to dangerous volumes and are wearing earbuds. And more individuals are managing pain with painkillers or taking them recreationally. Opiates, aspirin, ibuprofen, and acetaminophen will increase your chance of hearing loss particularly if used over a extended period of time.
How is Society Reacting to Hearing Loss as a Health Crisis?
Hearing loss is getting the attention of local, national, and world organizations. They’re trying to prevent this upward trend by educating the public on hearing loss such as:
- Risk factors
- Treatment options
These organizations also motivate individuals to:
- Identify their degree of hearing loss risk
- Have their hearing evaluated sooner in their lives
- Wear their hearing aids
Any delays in these activities make the affect of hearing loss much worse.
Scientists, healthcare providers, and government organizations are seeking solutions. They’re also pursuing ways to bring hearing-loss related costs down. Advanced hearing technology will be increased and lives will be dramatically enhanced.
Comprehensive strategies are being formulated by the World Health Organization (WHO) and other organizations as well as scientists. They are combining awareness, education, and health services to decrease the danger of hearing loss in underserved communities.
Among their efforts, they’ve developed research-based guidelines for communities, which help local leaders understand the health affects of noise. They show what safe noise exposure is, and work with communities to decrease noise exposure for residents. They’re also pushing forward research into how hearing loss is raised with the use and abuse of opiates.
Can You do Anything?
Keep yourself informed because hearing loss is a public health issue. Share practical information with other people and take steps to slow the advancement of your own hearing loss.
If you believe you may be experiencing hearing loss, have your hearing examined. Make sure you get and use your hearing aids if you learn that you need them.
The final goal is to prevent all hearing loss. You’re helping others who have hearing loss recognize that they’re not alone when you wear your hearing aids. You’re helping your community become more aware of the challenges of hearing loss. Policies, attitudes, and actions will then be changed by this awareness.