Most recent posts

Ted Talk – Why you don’t like the sound of your own voice

This is not strictly hearing related, although the presenter does briefly talk about how we hear ourselves.  Your voice is indistinguishable from how other people see you, but your relationship with it is far from obvious. Rébecca Kleinberger studies how we use and understand our voices and the voices of others. She explains why you […]

Sound of Metal

Sound of Metal is an upcoming movie about noise induced hearing loss, due for select release around late November in theatres and on Prime Video in December. During a series of adrenaline-fueled one-night gigs, itinerant punk-metal drummer Ruben (Riz Ahmed) begins to experience intermittent hearing loss. When a specialist tells him his condition will rapidly […]

Listening Fatigue

I have not always worked for a hearing clinic. Mathematics was my strength when I was at school and I always enjoyed computer programming, so my higher education and early career was in Information Technology. My hearing loss changed from mild to severe in my early adulthood quite quickly. Afterwards, as the years progressed, I […]

Hearing loss facts

Hearing loss is a global and national health crisis. It is an often misunderstood disability that has some very inaccurate stigmas attached to it. For the majority affected by hearing loss, the main difficulty comes from a lack of clarity of speech, especially when there is any background noise.

Hearing Loss does not only affect the elderly

  • According to the World Health Organization, over 360 million people worldwide have disabling hearing loss.
  • One in six Australians is affected by hearing loss. With an ageing population, this is expected to increase to one in four by 2050. 
  • Of the one in six affected, most  believe their own hearing is fine. Around two in five say their hearing is “very good” or “almost perfect”, while one in four say their hearing is below average.
  • Only 20% of the Australians who could benefit from a hearing aid actually use one.
  • Nearly 40% of the hearing loss experienced by individuals was caused by Noise-induced Hearing Loss; this is preventable and repeated exposure to loud noise.
  • In 2010, the National Acoustic Laboratories published the Binge Listening Report which revealed young Australians have a greater risk of acquiring a hearing loss through their leisure activities, (listening to music through headphones, regularly going to nightclubs and live music concerts)
  • Nearly half of Australians is affected by hearing loss were working age (16-64 years)
  • It roughly takes seven to 10 years, on average, before someone with hearing loss seeks treatment for it.

The effects of untreated hearing loss

Studies have linked untreated hearing loss effects to:

  • Irritability, negativism and anger
  • Fatigue, tension, stress and depression
  • Avoidance or withdrawal from social situations
  • Social rejection and loneliness
  • Reduced alertness and increased risk to personal safety
  • Impaired memory and ability to learn new tasks
  • Reduced job performance and earning power
  • Diminished psychological and overall health

Words describing deafness and hearing loss

There are no rights and wrongs about the words used to describe a person’s hearing loss. However, generally accepted definitions are as follows:

  • Deafened – people who were born with hearing and have lost most or all of their hearing later in life.
  • Hard of hearing – people who have lost some but not all hearing.
  • deaf (lower case ‘d’) – people who have hearing loss; they may be born deaf or become deaf. They mix well in the hearing world and may communicate orally and may also be users of sign language.
  • Deaf (upper case ‘D’) refers to people who are members of the Deaf community and who communicate almost exclusively with sign language.
  • Hearing impaired – anyone with any level of hearing loss.
  • Acquired hearing loss – people who were born with hearing but have lost some or all of their hearing.
  • Congenital hearing loss – born with hearing loss which may become progressively worse

There a number of noteworthy past and present people in music, movies, and media who suffer from hearing loss