It is no secret that hearing loss is on the rise. Today’s technology, while great, has also caused many issues with hearing health. Many children are using in-ear headphones from a young age daily, and they are listening to music way too loud. Not only has this led to the increase of hearing loss in today’s youth, but the general exposure to everyday sounds has also increased, putting everyone at a higher risk of hearing loss. Children and adults alike are at an increased risk of suffering from hearing loss and new research shows by just how much by 2020 and 2060.
A recent study published in the journal JAMA Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery, from researchers at Johns Hopkins Center on Aging and Health shows hearing loss in adults is expected to double by 2060. Hearing loss is still all too often thought of as a common and unavoidable sign of aging. It goes unnoticed and overlooked in older adults and in children, putting everyone at increased risk of social anxiety and cognitive decline. The research, which was analyzed by Adele Goman, PhD, and fellow doctors, found the increased risk factor. The team looked at audiometric data sourced from the most recent National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, which documented hearing loss in adults ages 20+. The risk was glaringly obvious when researchers followed a trend in the increased number of people suffering from hearing loss. To understand how this would impact future generations, they then applied this increase to 10-year population estimates through 2020 and 2060. This is where they found the data showing the shocking increase of those expected to suffer from hearing loss in the future – about 30 million additional Americans. The breakdown by age group looks roughly like the following:
- The number of adults 20 years and older is projected to slowly increase from 44 million in 2020 to 74 million in 2060.
- 55% of all adults experiencing this hearing loss will be 70+ in 2020
- 67% of all adults experiencing hearing loss in 2060 will be 70+
While hearing loss isn’t always avoidable, whether due to injury or illness, it can be avoided when it comes to controlling unprotected exposure to loud noises. Just by turning down the volume on your ear buds or using ear protectors around loud noises like yard work, concerts, or construction, you can reduce your risk of suffering from hearing loss. If you or a loved one has any questions about hearing loss or scheduling a hearing exam, you can contact the hearing specialists at Whisper Hearing Center. Simply find a location near you and call us to set up an appointment.