33 Eye Opening Hearing Loss Facts and Statistics - 2023

April 17, 2022
Soundly Staff
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Soundly Staff
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hearing loss statistics

According to the National Institute of Health, 15% of adults over 18 report some trouble hearing. That's more than 37M American adults or nearly as many people as live in the state of California.

We've gathered research from the CDC, National Institute of Health, World Health Organization, and others to put together this list of eye-opening hearing loss statistics.

Hearing Loss Statistics

Over 5% of the world’s population – or 430 million people – require rehabilitation to address their ‘disabling’ hearing loss.

It is estimated that by 2050 over 700 million people – or one in every ten people – will have disabling hearing loss.

Approximately 15% of American adults (37.5 million) aged 18 and over report some trouble hearing.

Hearing loss is the third most prevalent chronic health condition facing older adults in the U.S.

Men are almost twice as likely as women to have hearing loss among adults aged 20-69 (at least in part due to workplace sound hazards).

Hearing Aid Usage Statistics

About 28.8 million U.S. adults could benefit from using hearing aids.

About 80 percent of hearing loss cases can be treated with hearing aids, but only one in four individuals who could benefit actually use them.

Only 16 percent of U.S. adults age 20-69 who could benefit from hearing aids have ever tried them.

30 percent of U.S. adults age 70+ who could benefit from hearing aids have ever worn them.

People with hearing loss wait an average of 7 years before seeking help.

Impact of Untreated Hearing Loss

Those with untreated hearing loss earned on average $20,000 less annually than those who used hearing aids or cochlear implants.

The World Health Organization estimates that unaddressed hearing loss poses an annual global cost of US$ 980 billion.

Even a mild hearing loss can cause a child to miss as much as 50 percent of classroom discussion.

Older adults who use hearing aids show reduced depression symptoms and improved quality of life.

The risk of dementia may be up to five times greater and the risk of falling three times greater among people with untreated hearing loss.

Causes of Hearing Loss - Age, Workplace and Headphones

Today, 1 in 5 teens will experience some form of hearing loss—a rate about 30% higher than it was 20 years ago.

12.5 percent of kids between the ages of 6 and 19 have hearing loss as a result of listening to loud music, particularly through earbuds at unsafe volumes.

Globally, the prevalence of hearing loss increases with age, among those older than 60 years, over 25% are affected by disabling hearing loss.

About 2 percent of adults aged 45 to 54 have disabling hearing loss.

8.5 percent of adults aged 55 to 64 have disabling hearing loss.

Nearly 25 percent of those aged 65 to 74 have disabling hearing loss.

50 percent of those who are 75 and older have disabling hearing loss.

Tinnitus Statistics and Facts

An estimated 50 million Americans experience tinnitus (ringing in the ears); 90 percent of those also have hearing loss.

16 million people seek medical attention for tinnitus annually.

25 million American adults report experiencing tinnitus for five or more continuous minutes in the past year.

The prevalence of tinnitus grows as people get older, peaking for the age 60-69 cohort. Research suggests that roughly 30% of seniors experience tinnitus symptoms.

Tinnitus is the leading service-related disability among U.S. veterans, with 9.7% of all vets receiving service-related disability compensation for the condition in 2012.

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Hearing Loss Prevention Statistics

Nearly 50% of persons aged 12-35 years could be exposed to unsafe noise from personal listening devices, and 40% in this age group could be exposed to potentially damaging levels of sound at entertainment venues.

Musicians are 400% more likely to have a hearing loss and 57% more likely to have tinnitus than the general public.

About 25% of all workers have been exposed to hazardous noise, with 14% (22 million) exposed in the last year. 34% of noise-exposed workers report not wearing hearing protection.

22 million Americans—or about 22 percent— are exposed to hazardous noise levels in the workplace.

Noise exposure at work more than triples the chances of hearing loss among Americans age 20-69.

Hearing loss, hearing aid and tinnitus statistics were gathered from the organizations linked below.

World Health Organization

National Institute of Health

Hearing Loss Association of America

Hearing Health Foundation

Center for Disease Control

American Tinnitus Association

American Osteopathic Association

–The Soundly team

Frequently asked questions

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