Hearing Loss Statistics Astound

Three of every 1,000 American children are born deaf or hard of hearing, statistics show.

Three of every 1,000 American children are born deaf or hard of hearing, statistics show.

Hearing loss of some degree is all too common in the United States. Consider these statistics:

  • One in five Americans has hearing loss in at least one ear. That figure represents 48 million people and far exceeds previous hearing care industry estimates of approximately 25 million;
  • 20% of the U.S. population aged 12 years and older has hearing difficulties severe enough to impact communication. This can lead to difficulties in school, at work and with relationships;
  • There exists a direct link between age and hearing loss: Approximately 18% of American adults between the ages of 45 and 54, 30% of adults between ages 65 and 74, and 47% of adults ages 75 and older have hearing some degree of hearing impairment;
  • Three out of every 1,000 American newborns are deaf or hard-of-hearing;
  • Upwards of 26 million Americans between the ages of 20 and 69 have high frequency hearing loss caused by exposure to loud noises at work or on leisure activities;
  • About 60% of deployed military service men and women have noise induced hearing loss (NIHL), tinnitus (ringing in the ear), and other hearing injuries. In fact, Iraq and Afghanistan war veterans are more likely to suffer impairment of auditory activity than post traumatic stress syndrome.

If you believe you’re suffering a loss of hearing, however mild or severe, it’s highly recommended that you see a specialist. At St. Augustine Ear, Nose & Throat, our board-certified audiologists can perform a battery of hearing assessments and develop a treatment plan to help minimize continual hearing loss, or even restore your ability to hear. Contact our Jacksonville clinic at 904-461-6060 or via our convenient online form.

Hearing Aids for Ringing in the Ears?

Ringing in the ears or tinnitus is the perception of a sound (i.e. – ringing, high-pitched whining, buzzing, whistling or hissing) that does not have a corresponding external source. Although tinnitus can be a symptom of a more serious medical problem, neurological injury, earwax buildup, withdrawal from certain drugs or ear infections, the most common cause is noise-induced hearing loss. A doctor, ENT specialist or audiologist is needed to rule out potential medical or physical sources that may be causing the sounds a patient perceives.

Xino Tinnitus Hearing Aid - A new solution for ringing in the ears.

Xino Tinnitus Hearing Aid – A new solution for ringing in the ears.

Since it is a subjective irregularity, tinnitus can be difficult to measure using an objective hearing assessment. For some people, the ringing in their ears is infrequent or only produces a faint background noise. For others the condition causes a constant noise that can be so intense that the sensation can still be heard over a very loud external sound. However, many patients who suffer from the annoying condition understand all too well how debilitating tinnitus can be.

The pressing need for relief of benign conditions has led medical researchers to look for better ways to manage the otologic condition rather than cure it. As there is a high correlation between tinnitus and hearing loss, major manufacturers of assistive listening devices, such as Starkey®, have developed a tinnitus solution (Xino Tinnitus) that also functions as a high-end hearing aid, or can be configured for use as either. The state-of-the-art device features 16 adjustable frequency bands that allow the hearing specialist to create a preferred sound therapy stimulus for each patient. Additionally, the Xino Tinnitus hearing aids feature both binaural and monaural controls.

Patients use a BTE (behind the ear) hearing aid with a mini receiver-in-canal (RIC) to personalize their sound therapy stimulus independently of the amplification needed for volume control. Within a selected frequency, a hearing specialist can adjust the spectrum of noise from broadband to narrowband to tailor the results for each patient. If you sufferer from ringing in the ears, contact St. Augustine ENT to determine if you are a good candidate for a tinnitus hearing aid.