by Neil Bauman, Ph.D.
I came across an alarming statistic recently—37 million children in America have hearing loss. (1) That’s a lot of our kids that can’t hear well.
The 2000 census counted 72.3 million children in the USA under the age of 18 (2) and no doubt that figure is even larger now. 37 million out of 72.3 million works out to 51.2% of our children with a hearing loss. In other words, on the average, conservatively every second child you meet has some degree of hearing loss. Shocking, isn’t it! And scary too—especially when you realize that hearing doesn’t come back, but typically continues to get worse over the years. This means we are raising a whole generation that can’t hear properly now, and in a few more years will be adults that can’t hear well either.
Add to this the 55 million adults and 16 million seniors that already have a hearing loss (2) and you have a whopping 33% of the population hearing less than normally. That’s one in every three people you meet!
What this means is that everyone needs to start practicing good hearing conservation now before it is too late!
(1) Think Tank Improves Deaf Education. The Hearing Journal. Volume 64, Number 12, December 2011. p. 39.