The Baby Boomers are one of the most celebrated and controversial generations in American history. They lived through the turbulent 1960s, and witnessed massive social, political and economic changes as the grew into adulthood. Today, this group of 76 million Americans will enjoy a life expectancy likely to pass 100 just as the last of them start turning sixty-five (in 2028). Boomers will be controlling the economic purse strings — and the voting booths — for a long time to come.
But, of course, the Boomers are all too human, and despite being one of the healthiest generations to approach older age, they are susceptible to the kinds of problems that come with the territory.
A recent study by the EAR Foundation looked at hearing loss in baby boomers — born between 1945 and 1964. Among their findings: about half of Boomers in the US are experiencing some degree of hearing loss, and very few are doing anything about it.
Not only did half of those surveyed say they had difficulty hearing at times, the study also revealed that most people experiencing hearing loss are not seeking help to remedy their hearing issues. Only one of every three individuals surveyed had been tested for hearing loss. Not surprisingly, the majority of boomers who reported a hearing loss blame it on exposure to noise.
“This study indicates that baby boomers are losing their hearing at a more rapid pace than past generations,” said Dr. Michael Glasscock, founder of The EAR Foundation. “Whether because of apprehension or denial, boomers are not seeking the help they need to alleviate the affects of hearing loss. Hearing loss is a serious yet often overlooked issue, and this study will help bring it into focus so we can help this generation take the next steps on the road to better hearing.”
Like their younger counterparts, Boomers retain an imagined armor of invincibility. The once youthful Youth Generation, is seems, would prefer not to think of itself as old. But age, noise pollution, and disease can take their toll on the quality of hearing.
At Peninsula Hearing Center, Dr. Dena believes that there’s no need for Boomers to suffer in silence. She urges anyone who thinks they may be experiencing hearing loss to contact the Center’s office at 619-780-2831. “We urge anyone who thinks they may be experiencing hearing loss to contact us and get information about the many convenient and economical devices, from hearing aids to amplified telephones to assistive listening technology, on the market today. Baby boomers can take advantage of both audiology testing and the wealth of products for better hearing that are available to them. We can help!”