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Basic Facts of Hearing Loss

Basic Facts of Hearing Loss

Hearing loss has been shown to negatively impact nearly every dimension of the human experience, including physical health, emotional and mental health, perceptions of mental acuity, social skills, family relationships and self-esteem, as well as work and school.

Many people don’t realize the multiple detrimental effects that hearing loss can cause, and some of the basic facts and statistics of how many are affected but are either not diagnosed or not seeking treatment.

Hearing Loss Association of America has compiled several useful hearing loss facts and statistics:

General Facts

  • There are 48 million Americans who have a significant hearing loss.
  • Hearing loss is the third most prevalent health issue in older adults, after arthritis and heart disease.
  • An estimated 50 million Americans experience tinnitus (ringing in the ears) and 90% of those also have hearing loss.

Hearing Aids

  • Of those with hearing loss, 80% of the people who could benefit from a hearing aid do not wear one.
  • Less than 30% of adults aged 70 or older who could benefit from hearing aids actually use them. That drops to only 16% of adults aged 20 to 69.
  • On average, hearing aid users wait 7-10 years after their initial diagnosis before being fitted with hearing aids.

Hearing loss can have major negative impacts on proficiency and success for adults in their work, and for children at school.


  • More than 30 million Americans are exposed to dangerous levels of noise in their workplace.

Children and Teens

  • An estimated 1 in 5 American teens experiences some degree of hearing loss.
  • 80% of teens with hearing loss report that it is due to loud noise.
  • About 2 to 3 out of every 1,000 children in the United States are born with a detectable hearing loss in one or both ears.
  • Even a mild hearing loss can cause a child to miss as much as 50% classroom discussion.

If you are experiencing signs of hearing loss, unfortunately, you are not alone. There are many negative effects that hearing loss can have on several other areas of your health, and overall quality of life. The first step is scheduling a hearing test, so that you can understand your diagnosis and options of treatment to better your hearing health, and optimize all areas of your life affected by hearing loss.