By Robert J. Szczerba
The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that there are more than 360 million people worldwide with a disabling hearing loss, including 32 million children and one-third of people over 65 years of age. Hearing loss may result from genetic causes, complications at birth, certain infectious diseases, chronic ear infections, the use of particular drugs, exposure to excessive noise and aging.
One of the main impacts of hearing loss is on the individual’s ability to communicate with others, since spoken language development is often delayed in children with deafness. Limited access to services and exclusion from communication can have a significant impact on everyday life, causing feelings of loneliness, isolation and frustration, particularly among older people with hearing loss.
Recent advances in technology have the potential to improve the quality of life for those who are deaf or hard of hearing. Here’s a look at four products in this space that caught our attention.