English.news.cn 2011-08-21 14:36:44
CANBERRA, Aug. 21 (Xinhua) -- Almost one in five Australians suffer from hearing loss, with more than half of them have not done anything to correct the problem, a survey found on Sunday.
The Newspoll survey on 1,200 adults with hearing difficulties, commissioned by implant maker Cochlear to mark the start of Hearing Awareness Week on Sunday, found that 52 percent of those with hearing loss have not done anything to correct the problem.
More than 40 percent had not even seen a doctor or health professional about it.
According to Professor Graeme Clark, who created the cochlear implant for moderately to profoundly deaf people, many Australians with hearing loss were often embarrassed by their condition, so that they do not do anything to improve the problem.
"It's obvious that the stigma of hearing loss still has a major impact on people's quality of life, but it must be remembered that hearing loss affects people of all ages, from newborns to elderly people - and there's nothing to be ashamed of," he said in the survey released on Sunday.
The survey found 72 percent of Australians with hearing problems struggled in noisy environment. Nearly a quarter said their working life was affected, and 45 percent had difficulties interacting with family and friends.
Australian Hearing report showed hearing loss costs Australia almost 12.5 billion U.S. dollars a year. Almost 160,000 people do not work because they cannot hear well enough.
With the aging of the Australian population, hearing loss is projected to increase to one in every four Australians by 2050.