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Canadian Health Measures Survey of 2012 and 2013 indicate that:

  • 20% of adults (or 1 in 5) aged 19 to 79 had at least mild hearing loss in one or both ears.
  • Prevalence of hearing loss increases with age: 47% of adults aged 60-79 experience hearing loss compared to 16% of adults aged 40-59 and only 7% of 19-39 year olds.
  • Two thirds of adults over 60 with hearing loss experienced trouble in both ears compared to half of the 40-59 year olds.

Strikingly, the survey reported that “The majority of Canadians with measured hearing loss were not aware they had any hearing problems. About 70% of adults and 83% of children or youth with measured hearing loss did not report any diagnosis of hearing problems by a health care professional.” In other words, despite receiving a regular health check-up from medical professionals, 70% of adult Canadians with hearing loss were unaware they even had a hearing problem.

Many of us manage to avoid getting our hearing tested until the problem is too evident to ignore or accommodate. By the time our hearing loss becomes noticeable, when we can no longer compensate by turning up the volume, asking someone to repeat themselves or leaning in closer, we may already have experienced social isolation, depression, safety issues, even mobility limitations related to hearing loss.

Furthermore, due to Canada’s aging population, and hearing loss being linked to the aging process, reports of hearing loss are increasing. Statistics Canada states that the aging population will accelerate between 2010 and 2031, the time period where the baby boomer population will reach the age of 65.

This is why the National Campaign for Better Hearing encourages everyone to test their ears at 60 years. The sooner hearing loss is detected, the sooner it can be addressed and treated before our quality of life declines. Make time for your hearing health and encourage others around you to do the same. You won’t regret it!

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