Scientists believe 20-somethings with hearing aids will soon become more common as hearing loss is a public health concern.
The majority of individuals think of the elderly when they consider severe hearing loss. But over the last few years, there has been a surge in hearing loss impacting all age groups. Increased hearing loss among all ages further shows that hearing loss isn’t an “aging issue,” but a growing crisis.
Scientists predict that in the next 40 years, hearing loss cases will double in adults 20 and older. The healthcare community sees this as a serious public health concern. According to John Hopkins medical researchers, one in five individuals is currently dealing with hearing loss so extreme it makes communication difficult.
Hearing loss is rising among all age groups and here is why researchers think that is.
Additional Health Problems Can be The Outcome of Hearing Loss
It’s a horrible thing to have to endure serious hearing loss. Normal communication becomes difficult, aggravating, and exhausting. It can cause people to stop doing what they love and disengage from family and friends. When you’re experiencing severe hearing loss, it will be impossible to be active without getting help.
It’s not only diminished hearing that individuals with neglected hearing loss suffer from. They’re also more likely to experience the following
- Other acute health problems
- Cognitive decline
- Injuries from repeated falls
They also have difficulty getting their basic needs met and are more likely to have difficulties with personal relationships.
Along with the affect on their personal lives, people suffering from hearing loss may face increased:
- Insurance costs
- Accident rates
- Healthcare expenses
- Disability rates
- Needs for public assistance
We need to fight hearing loss as a society because as these factors reveal, hearing loss is a real challenge.
Why Are Multiple Age Groups Encountering Increased Hearing Loss?
The current rise in hearing loss can be linked to a number of factors. One factor is the increased incidence of common conditions that can cause hearing loss, including:
- Poor diet and a lack of consistent exercise
- Anxiety and unmanaged stress
- High blood pressure
- Cardiovascular disease
More individuals are suffering from these and related disorders at earlier ages, which leads to additional hearing loss.
Increased prevalence of hearing loss also has a great deal to do with lifestyle. In recreational and work areas specifically, it’s becoming more common to be exposed to loud sound. We’re being exposed to loud sounds and music in more places and modern technology is getting louder. It’s frequently the younger people who have the highest amount of noise exposure in:
- Bars, clubs, and concerts
- Shooting ranges
Moreover, many individuals are turning the volume of their music up to dangerous volumes and are using earbuds. And a greater number of people are now using painkillers, either to manage chronic pain or recreationally. Opiates, ibuprofen, aspirin, and acetaminophen will raise your risk of hearing loss particularly if taken over a extended time periods.
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 educating the public as a measure to reduce this growing trend with the following:
- Risk factors
- Treatment possibilities
These organizations also urge individuals to:
- Get their hearing examined earlier in their lives
- Use their hearing aids
- Identify their level of hearing loss risk
Any delays in these actions make the affect of hearing loss a lot worse.
Solutions are being looked for by government organizations, healthcare providers, and researchers. Hearing aid related costs are also being tackled. Advanced hearing technology will be increased and lives will be significantly enhanced.
Broad strategies are being created by the World Health Organization (WHO) and other organizations as well as scientists. They are incorporating awareness, education, and health services to lower the danger of hearing loss among underserved groups.
Among their contributions, they’ve created research-based guidelines for communities, which help local leaders understand the health impacts of noise. They describe 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?
Hearing loss is a public health problem so stay informed. Share practical information with other people and take steps to slow the development of your own hearing loss.
Get your own hearing checked if you suspect you are suffering from hearing loss. If you find you need hearing aids, make sure you wear them.
Stopping hearing loss is the main goal. You’re helping other people who are dealing with 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 change attitudes, policies, and actions.