New study shows people neglect their hearing health despite the availability of over-the-counter hearing aids
Approximately 44% of Americans ages 45 and up think about their hearing at least occasionally, but 79% report they have not had a hearing test in the last year, according to a new study from Lexie Hearing, a leader in over-the-counter (OTC) hearing aids for people with mild-to-moderate hearing loss.
The study, released March 3 in honor of World Hearing Day, surveyed the hearing health behaviors of 1,000 Americans 45 and older to better understand how Americans think about and care for their hearing as they age.
“World Hearing Day represents a moment for everyone to evaluate their hearing and take the steps to treat hearing loss,” said Nic Klopper, CEO of Lexie Hearing. “With the FDA’s approval of over-the-counter hearing aids for mild to moderate hearing loss last year, it’s easier and more affordable than ever to take control of your hearing health so you can get back to enjoying the moments you love with family and friends.”
Findings show that hearing is often overlooked, even among those who prioritize other areas of health. Among the 76% of Americans who say their health is “very important” to them, only 18% have had a hearing test in the past year, compared to 75% who have visited a dentist, 75% who have had an eye exam, and 45% who had done both.
“The first step in caring for your hearing is to take a hearing test,” said Klopper. “Doing so will help you determine if you have hearing loss, how much and whether or not you could benefit from a hearing aid.”
While hearing aids are now more accessible, 2 in 5 (40%) people are still unsure where to get a hearing aid if they need it. More than half (54%) say if they had a hearing issue or concern, they would contact their primary care physician first.
Last October, the FDA approved new regulations for the sale of over-the-counter hearing aids for mild to moderate hearing loss, removing a substantial barrier to hearing health and giving consumers the flexibility to purchase high-quality devices without a prescription in retail, pharmacy and online stores nationwide.
Hearing health can have an impact on overall health as untreated hearing loss can lead to isolation. Regular hearing aid use on the other hand has been associated with a lower prevalence of depression and has been shown to improve physical and cognitive health, including reducing the risk of dementia.
In recognition of World Hearing Day and to encourage more people to take action toward better hearing health, Lexie Hearing will be donating a portion of all March sales to its Lexie Cares initiative, to help provide better access to hearing worldwide.
Visit www.lexiehearing.com/us/best-online-hearing-test to take a free short clinically validated hearing test and learn more about hearing health. Lexie Hearing’s suite of hearing aids is available in more than 11,000 stores nationwide and online at LexieHearing.com.
Source: Lexie Hearing
Images: Lexie Hearing