Over 36 million American adults have some degree of hearing loss

  • Posted: Wednesday, November 28, 2012 7:40 p.m.


Over 36 million American adults have some degree of hearing loss. That is over 4 times the amount of people who live in New York City.

The statistics are shocking, and even more so, knowing that over half of those 36 million Americans are under the age of 65. Hearing loss is an increasing health concern in this nation, that is often preventable. Taking time to see an audiologist for regular hearing screenings and knowing the signs of hearing loss can protect your hearing. Make an appointment with an audiologist this October during National Audiology Awareness Month.

Hearing loss can be caused by exposure to loud noises, ear infections, trauma, or ear disease; harm to the inner ear and ear drum, illness or certain medications, and deterioration due to the normal aging process. The amount of noise Americans are exposed to today plays an important role in the recent increase of hearing loss across the nation. It is no longer just a health concern for seniors.

Have you stopped going to restaurants and social gatherings? Do you keep to yourself when in noisy environments? If you answered yes, you may have a hearing problem. Some tell-tell signs of hearing loss are: trouble hearing conversation in a noisy environment such as restaurants, difficulty or inability to hear people talking to you without looking at them, and/or a constant ringing in your ears.

On average, most Americans don’t know how to recognize the first signs of hearing loss or which health professional is qualified to diagnose and treat the condition. If you think you may have a hearing loss or need to discuss options to protect your hearing, you need to see an audiologist.

An audiologist is a licensed and clinically experienced health-care professional who specializes in evaluating, diagnosing, and treating people with hearing loss and balance disorders. The first step in treatment of a hearing problem is to get your hearing evaluated by an audiologist. A hearing evaluation will determine the degree of hearing loss you have and what can be done. Although most hearing loss is permanent, an audiologist can determine the best treatment, which may include hearing aids, assistive listening devices, hearing protection and hearing rehabilitation. Many people have been told they have “nerve damage” and therefore nothing can be done to improve their hearing. We have heard that time and time again. However, that simply is not true. We have been able to help many people who have previously been told nothing can be done to improve their hearing. Help is available.

In response to the growing number of Americans suffering from hearing loss, the American Academy of Audiology, in conjunction with Hearing Lifestyles, has launched National Audiology Awareness Month this October.

The first step in hearing awareness is to schedule a hearing evaluation. Most insurance companies cover a diagnostic hearing evaluation when performed by an audiologist. Contact our office today at 704-633-0023 to schedule your hearing evaluation. Help is available.

Dr. Lorin S. Oden is a Board Certified Audiologist at

Hearing Lifestyles, located at 464 Jake Alexander Blvd. West, Salisbury, NC 28147

Call 704-633-0023 or visit their website at www.HearingLifestyles.com

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