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Hearing Loss: Why Treatment Is So Important

What you can do to make a positive difference in your daily life.

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In the U.S., hearing loss is on the rise. Recent numbers show that significant hearing loss affects 48 million people throughout the country.¹  

Although this health concern is more common among the aging population (1 out of 3 people over age 65 have some degree of loss¹), there’s a growing prevalence at all ages. Even people in their 30s, 40s and 50s are experiencing hearing loss, often due to repeated noise exposure and environmental factors. 

Why Treatment is Important 

Hearing loss has an obvious impact on a person’s ability to understand others. But the negative effects of untreated hearing loss go far beyond effective communication, with impacts seen in these 3 areas: 

1. Social and Emotional Health Exclusion from conversation can have a significant impact on everyday life, causing feelings of loneliness, isolation and frustration, particularly among older people. Left untreated for long enough, these feelings may further develop into issues such as anxiety, paranoia or depression.  

2. Physical and Cognitive Health Hearing loss has also been linked to a variety of other health concerns and is often related to cognitive decline and impaired learning. Research has even shown that people with untreated hearing loss may experience an increased risk of more serious health concerns, including: Alzheimer’s and dementia, chronic kidney disease, diabetes, depression, cardiovascular disease, and falling.  

3. Productivity and Financial Health Untreated hearing loss can have a profound effect among the working-age population. Adults with hearing loss have a much higher unemployment rate, and those who are employed have a higher percentage of being in lower grades of employment compared with the general workforce.⁶ Lifetime earnings for those with untreated hearing loss average 50%–70% less than their typical-hearing peers in the U.S., and household incomes may experience a negative impact of up to $12,000 per year.2 

Getting a hearing test and hearing aids can make a positive difference in your daily life. In fact, 72% of those with hearing loss can benefit significantly from a hearing aid.3 And the benefits go beyond better listening and communication. Treating hearing loss may help improve social and emotional health, physical and cognitive health, and productivity and financial health. 

Hearing Care that Fits You  

AARP® Hearing Solutions™ provided by UnitedHealthcare Hearing. AARP members save 20% on hearing aids and 15% on accessories, plus receive a hearing test at no cost and personalized support through a large nationwide network of hearing providers. Plus, get a 4-year warranty on prescription brand name hearing aids.   

If you think you may be experiencing hearing loss and are curious about hearing aids, UnitedHealthcare Hearing offers an online hearing test. This quick test can help determine if there’s a need to see a professional for further evaluation and a hearing aid fitting.  

Wondering how your hearing measures up? 

Click here to take a FREE online hearing test from the comfort of your home. Visit

1. Center for Hearing and Communication. Statistics and facts about hearing loss. November 2017.  

2. Hearing Health Foundation. “Making a Sound Investment.” Accessed April 28, 2020 

3. U.S. National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health. “Study of hearing aid effectiveness and patient satisfaction.” Accessed April 6, 2020. 

2022 United HealthCare Services, Inc. 

The AARP hearing program discount cannot be combined with any other discounts, promotions, coupons or hearing aid benefit plans unless noted herein. Products or services that are reimbursable by federal programs including Medicare and Medicaid are not available on a discounted or complimentary basis. AARP commercial member benefits are provided by third parties, not by AARP or its affiliates. Providers pay a royalty fee to AARP for the use of its intellectual property. These fees are used for the general purposes of AARP. Some provider offers are subject to change and may have restrictions. Please contact the provider directly for details. UnitedHealthcare Hearing is provided through UnitedHealthcare, offered to existing members of certain products underwritten or provided by UnitedHealthcare Insurance Company or its affiliates to provide specific hearing aid discounts. This is not an insurance nor managed care product, and fees or charges for services in excess of those defined in program materials are the member's responsibility. UnitedHealthcare does not endorse nor guarantee hearing aid products/services available through the hearing program. This program may not be available in all states or for all group sizes. Components subject to change.