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Fathers' Hearing Affects Family Function and Fiscal Health
Date:6/17/2009

with hearing loss are men. And 31 million people in the United States have a hearing loss. That translates into 15 percent of baby boomers and one-in-three seniors--many of whom either have remained in or are re-entering the workforce as a result of the recession and lost retirement savings. Fortunately, 95 percent of hearing loss is treatable with hearing aids.

According to a BHI national study--"Impact of Hearing Loss on Household Income"--Americans with unaddressed hearing loss make less money than people with normal hearing. But the study also found that wearing a hearing aid reduces the amount of income lost. Specifically, untreated hearing loss negatively affects household income, on average, by up to $23,000 per year depending on the degree of hearing loss. But the use of hearing aids mitigates those negative effects by about 50 percent.

According to the International Listening Association (ILA), listening is one of the top skills employers seek in those being promoted. And individual performance in an organization is found to be directly related to listening ability or perceived listening effectiveness.

"Untreated hearing loss can affect virtually every aspect of a father's life," says Kochkin. "It often leads to a sense of isolation, and to considerable negative social, psychological, cognitive and health effects that go well beyond hearing alone. What's more, untreated hearing loss can make family time far more difficult and frustrating for dads and for the entire family."

Kochkin urges fathers--for the sake of their families--to be honest with themselves about hearing loss. To stay at the top of their game in today's tough job market, and to stay close with their families at home, this Father's Day dads across America should be asking themselves these questions:

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