Hearing Aid usage in the U.S.
If you experience hearing loss, hearing aids can significantly improve your overall well-being, reduce isolation, and help with better communication skills. Using hearing aids also helps to delay the onset of dementia.
Hearing aids are still not used by many who would benefit from them. Millions of Americans can improve their hearing health and overall health, but they either never get them or wait too long to purchase them. The three main reasons why many people don’t wear them are due to the cost, access, and stigma that is sometimes surrounded by wearing them.
An Increase in Hearing Aid Use
From 2011 to 2018, hearing aids have had an increase in use from 15% to 18.5% in adults over the age of 70. This data was published this past December of 2020 by the medical journal JAMA: Internal Medicine.
This means that many more older Americans have an easier time socializing with family and friends while reducing the risks of health problems that are associated with untreated hearing loss.
The use of Hearing Aids is Unequal between different Socioeconomic Groups
According to data that was collected, significantly fewer Black Americans reported an increase in purchasing and using hearing aids. That’s just a +.8% shift in 7 years. In contrast, there was a +4.3% increase in White Americans purchasing and using hearing aids.
Based on levels of income, the number of people who owned hearing aids fell in the past few years (from 12.4% to 10.8%) among older adults who live under less than 100% of the federal poverty level.
Basically, if you are White or have a higher level of income, you will probably use hearing aids.
Why is there a gap in Hearing Healthcare Treatment?
There is a gap in treatment for hearing health. The latest studies show that this problem is growing, especially among the most impoverished Americans.
There are systemic problems in American healthcare that cause minorities and Americans with lower income not to have access to many different services, even if they have Medicare or Medicaid.
What should You do?
If you, or a loved one, are experiencing hearing loss, contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a free hearing test and consultation. We offer various hearing aid styles and brands, along with assistive listening devices at discount prices.
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