In North America, more than 10% of the population suffer from hearing loss and that figure is rising - even among the young. At the same time, studies show that a large proportion of these hearing impaired people do not use hearing aids.
In America, 35 million suffer from hearing loss, but more than 25 million of them do not have a hearing aid. Hearing loss affects 3 million Canadians, but only one in six of the hearing impaired wear hearing aids.
In the USA, hearing-impaired people typically pay for their hearing aids themselves, as the United States has a very limited public hearing health care system. The conditions in Canada vary from province to province.
Hearing loss at younger age
People lose their hearing much earlier than in the past. A Canadian study found that 25% of people with hearing loss are younger than 40 years of age, and 70% are younger than 60 years.
According to several studies, hearing loss is also common among adolescents and children in both the US and Canada.
This disconcerting trend is caused by the generally higher noise levels in today's society.
The problem is growing
The American 2005 MarkeTrak VII report projected that the number of Americans with hearing loss will increase to 40 million by 2025 and 53 million by 2050.
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