deaf and hard-of-hearing account for the single largest group of disabled
people in America. Of the more than 49 million disabled, at least
28 million have a significant hearing impairment that interferes with
communication. 28 million adds up to more than all those suffering
from heart disease, cancer, multiple sclerosis, blindness, tuberculosis,
venereal disease and kidney disease combined.
Of the 28 million, more than half (15 million) is under the age of
of people with hearing loss are between the ages of 21 and 65.
of hearing problems among Americans increased by almost 54 percent
between the early 1970s and the early 1990s.
Between 1990 and 2050, the number of people with hearing and speech
impairments will increase at a faster rate than the total U.S. population
as a direct result of the aging of the U.S. population and our love
of power tools, boom boxes and motorized garden and recreation equipment.
to follow the conversation of two or more people talking at the
same time or if there is "white noise" in the background,
people with hearing loss stop going to live events.
People with hearing loss wait an average of seven years before seeking
Only 9.7 % of people age 65 and older have normal hearing; only
78 % of people over 55 have normal hearing.
aids do not benefit everyone who has a hearing loss.
percent of people who could benefit from hearing aids are not using
loss cannot be restored by hearing aids in the same way that wearing
corrective lenses restores eyesight.