Age-Related Hearing Loss

Hearing Loss Matters

Age-related hearing loss is more than a personal inconvenience, it's a public health issue with wide-ranging social impacts. In this new documentary, learn why, directly from those affected by hearing loss as they explore communication and treatment options. Produced by the Minnesota Commission of the Deaf, DeafBlind and Hard of Hearing (MNCDHH) & Twin Cities PBS (TPT).

What is age-related hearing loss?

Age-related hearing loss comes on gradually - so gradually that you may not realize what you are missing, such as the sound of rustling leaves or your own footsteps.

Hearing loss often manifests itself, partially as the inability to hear, and partially as the inability to understand speech. So you may be under the impression that everyone is mumbling. It is worse in noisy situations.

Age-related hearing loss can cause isolation, fear and uncertainty. Family members, friends and co-workers may be unsure about how to communicate. Fortunately, help and resources are available.

So what? Isn't it just a normal part of aging? Yes and no. While hearing loss is a common part of aging, it is still critical to address it. If you have difficulty hearing, then you lose your ability to communicate with family and friends, as well as the ability to actively participate in meetings and social events. There's nothing more important to maintaining your quality of life than being able to interact with others. Without the daily interaction that keeps your brain active and your happiness at a good level, it has other implications for your physical, cognitive and mental health.

If you have watched this video and need more information about age-related hearing loss, visit the Hearing Loss Matters website to learn where to get help. This site also has resources and research for health providers as well as actions that can be taken for policy professionals.