Beaverton Committee on Aging: Do You Sometimes Struggle to Hear?

By Hillary Greenebaumcity-of-beaverton-logo

You are not alone! Hearing loss is an invisible disability and there are more of us who suffer from it than you might expect.

Did you know that:

  • One in five Americans ages 12 and older has hearing loss in at least one ear.
  • Hearing loss is the third most common chronic health condition in the US. Almost twice as many people report hearing loss as diabetes or cancer.
  • For veterans and military service members, tinnitus and hearing loss are the #1 top reported health condition.
  • Hearing aids show significant benefit to individuals with hearing loss.
  • The risk of dementia may be as much as five times greater, and the risk of falling is three times greater among people with untreated hearing loss.
  • Hearing aides have been shown to reverse negative psychological and emotional changes due to hearing loss. Hearing aids may also offset cognitive declines from untreated hearing loss.
  • Older adults with hearing loss show reduced depression and higher quality of life using hearing aids.

Here are 10 questions to help determine whether you (or a loved one) should have your hearing tested:

  1. Do you have difficulty hearing over the telephone?
  2. Do you have trouble following the conversation when two or more people are talking at the same time?
  3. Do people complain that you turn the TV volume up too high?
  4. Do you have to strain to understand conversation?
  5. Do you have trouble hearing in a noisy background?
  6. Do you find yourself asking people to repeat themselves?
  7. Do the people you talk to seem to mumble or speak unclearly?
  8. Do you misunderstand what others are saying frequently?
  9. Do you have trouble understanding soft speech or voices?
  10. Are people frequently annoyed due to your misunderstanding of what was said?

If you answered “yes” to three or more of these questions, you may want to schedule a professional hearing evaluation with a hearing healthcare professional. A hearing screening test just takes a few minutes and can help you learn more about a serious and life altering condition.

For more information, please speak with your health care professionals and look up the Hearing Health Foundation (https://hearinghealthfoundation.org/ . For information about the Beaverton Committee on Aging, contact jbrooks@beavertonoregon.gov.