Hearing Loss Incidences: Escalating

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Communication is a very significant aspect of daily living. Every human being interacts with each other through language, but in order for them to understand each other, there must be a mutual process of talking and listening to both sides. For a man to talk, he needs to learn the language and use mouth for talking, and for him to listen, he needs to use his ears for this. However, there are certain circumstances in which one person has a disability that can hinder the communication process. This disability can be in the form of being mute or being deaf. And recently, one study says that the incidences of hearing loss occur more frequently than expected.

Hearing impairment or hearing loss is a condition wherein an individual is not cable of detecting certain frequencies of sound which makes him partially or totally deaf. This condition occurs very slowly and later on can lead to deafness. Medically, there are two main categories of hearing loss. These two categories include: conductive hearing loss in which there is a mechanical problem either in the outside or in the middle ear; and sensorineural hearing loss which is a problem located in the inner ear, it is usually caused by the damaged of tiny hair like figures in the inner ear which transmit sound waves. According to the National Institutes of Health, “Conductive hearing loss (CHL) occurs because of a mechanical problem in the outer or middle ear. The three tiny bones of the ear (ossicles) may not conduct sound properly. Or, the eardrum may not vibrate in response to sound. Fluid in the middle ear can cause this type of hearing loss.”

“Sensorineural hearing loss (SNHL) is due to a problem with the inner ear. It most often occurs when the tiny hair cells (nerve endings) that move sound through the ear are injured, diseased, do not work correctly, or have died.”

The new study which was published in the issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine tackled about the presenting health problem which is about hearing loss. They have discovered that the cases of hearing loss are far more increasing than expected.

The study involves the examination and analysis of data gathered from the National Health and Nutritional Examination Surveys (NHANES). The survey includes tracking down of American participants from year 1971 and assessment of about 7,000 hearing tests dated between 2001 and 2008. Also, the researchers have qualified hearing loss as being unable to hear speech sounds of 25 decibels or less. This was the same definition the World Health Organization is using for the term hearing loss.

Moreover, the researchers found out that in United States, about 20.3 per cent or 48 million individuals who belong to the age group of 12 and above are actually suffering from the slowly progressing hearing loss in at least one ear. Also, the researchers added that about 30 million or 12.7 per cent of the general public are having the condition in both ears.




  1. Please do not use the inappropriate term – hearing impaired (or impairment). If I tell people that I am hearing impaired, they think something is wrong with me. However, if I tell people I am deaf, they say nothing is wrong with me except that I can’t hear!


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