Together we can raise awareness of hearing loss in adults and children


Hearing loss can affect the lives of both children and adults, as well as their families, friends and colleagues. When hearing loss remains untreated it can remove a person’s connection to their loved ones.

Through national policy changes that supports early detection and treatment, we can minimize the impact felt by millions of people worldwide. Did you know that by taking action to treat hearing loss it’s possible to reduce a person’s risk of dementia by over 8%? In children, we can also positively effect their speech and language development, educational achievement and future career.

You can read more about hearing loss in adults, hearing loss in children, and the costs to society. We regularly update our website to bring you the latest information, key facts, and infographics.

Did You Know…

  • There are 196 million people living with hearing loss in Europe
  • Around the world over 1,5 billion people live with hearing loss – this will rise to 2.5 billion people by 2050
  • Reduced quality of life (QoL) costs Europe €67 billion per year
  • The EU loses €149 billion from reduced productivity, under-employment, or unemployment of adults living with untreated hearing loss
  • Around 20% of women and 30% of men in Europe will live with hearing loss by the age of 70. (Shield, 2019, WHO, 2021; Lamb et al, 2016, hear-it, 2019)

You might also be interested in reading more about hearing loss and cognitive decline in adults.


Endorse the Manifesto

We believe in an open and connected world.
Read our manifesto and add your voice to the conversation.

Read and endorse the manifesto →

Ready to connect?

Follow us on Linkedin

Follow on Linkedin

Facts and Figures

  • Hearing loss is on the rise

    The World Health Organization. Deafness and hearing loss. Available at: (October 2018)

  • Hearing Range

    © MED-EL

  • Life without Hearing Solution

    The World Health Organization. Deafness and hearing loss. Available at: (October 2018)

    Bidadi, S., Nejadkazem, M. and Naderpour, M. (2008). The relationship between chronic otitis media–induced hearing loss and the acquisition of social skills. Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery, 139(5), pp.665-670.

    Gopinath, B., Hickson, L., Schneider, J., McMahon, C., Burlutsky, G., Leeder, S. and Mitchell, P. (2012). Hearing-impaired adults are at increased risk of experiencing emotional distress and social engagement restrictions five years later. Age and Ageing, 41(5), pp.618-623.

    Jopling, K. (2017). Hearing Loss and older people. Royal Voluntary Service, p.12. Available at: hearing_loss_and_older_people.pdf (October 2018)

    Raine, C., Atkinson, H., Strachan, D. and Martin, J. (2016). Access to cochlear implants: Time to reflect.Cochlear Implants International, 17(sup1), pp.42-46.

  • People over 65 years

    The World Health Organization. Deafness and hearing loss. Available at: (October 2018)

    Chien W, Lin FR. Prevalence of hearing aid use among older adults in the United States. Arch Intern Med. 2012;172:292–293

    Special Report on Hearing in Older Adults (2018). Available at: awareness-and-corporate-communication/special-reports/special-report-2—older-adults/ special-report-2-hearing-in-older-adults_engl.pdf?sfvrsn=4a36c847_14
    (October 2018)

  • How to Recognise the Symptoms

    © MED-EL

  • Childhood Hearing Loss

    The World Health Organization. Deafness and hearing loss. Available at: (October 2018)

    Hearring Report (2014). Switched on for Life. Available at: (October 2018)

  • Hearing Impairment Impacts Children‘s Lives and Society

    Hearring Report (2014). Switched on for Life. Available at: (October 2018)

  • How to Recognise the Symptoms in Children

    © MED-EL


Europe’s Ageing Society

Hearing loss is the third most prevalent chronic health condition for adults in Europe, with proven links to dementia, depression, and increased health and social care needs. Yet adults with hearing loss may not be treated for decades. An inability to participate in conversation is reported to lead to much reduced independence, social isolation, and withdrawal.

Hearing Loss in Children

The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates 32 million children worldwide are born with or develop sensorineural deafness in their early childhood. If denied access to treatment, a child’s development of speech, language, and cognitive skills is greatly affected. Research suggests that educational, career, and economic opportunities are also much reduced compared to their hearing peers.

Costs to Society

The significant burden that hearing loss places on individual EU citizens and European health and social systems has been proven to be vastly reduced or even nullified with effective treatment. Studies suggest that significant €bn savings can be made with proactive investment and policy change.