Friday, February 5, 2010

So He's Got Hearing Aids... Who Cares?

I couldn't believe it when I read this article from about Mayor Bloomberg getting news coverage over his hearing aid. The articles that are linked from the blog post are just silly. In the first one, you can see a photo of the mayor's ITE hearing aid, which actually looks more obvious than other in-the-canal aids I've seen before.

I just don't understand why the media would be so fascinated by what should be something as normal as wearing eyeglasses. 36 million American adults (that's just adults) have some degree of hearing loss, according to the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders. How many of those people with loss feel encouraged and open about their loss based upon the fact that one man's hearing aid is considered news?

Seriously. I don't blame the mayor at all for his terse response to a question about his aids. He may be a public figure but hearing aids just aren't one of those remarkable things that should make the news. Not to mention that according to one of the articles, he wore the aid "while visiting the construction site of the No. 7 train." If somebody can't wear a hearing aid at a loud construction site without attracting notice, when can they?


  1. The American society is purely audistic in general.

    Too many Americans are preoccupied with the marvels of technology.

    The news about President Ronald Reagan wearing hearing aids also often found in media reports in the 80s!

    Hearing loss is part of aging process. Handful of people just could not accept such a hearing loss.

    Robert L. Mason (RLM)
    RLMDEAF blog

  2. Too bad Mayor Bloomberg couldn't have said something positive about hearing aids. It seems as though his ego got in the way.

  3. I don't think it has anything to do with audism. Society is obsessed with age. In the general public, when an older person starts wearing hearing aids it is a sign that they are getting old. If you read the articles, they are mainly focused on the idea of aging, and the hearing aids are the signs. I do not think people are generally fascinated by hearing aids.

    But, I do agree it is silly that they are reporting about his hearing aids. It must be a slow day.


  4. I agree about hearing aids being related to age, but I've fit people in their 20's with hearing aids.

    The fact is it's the people running around who need hearing aids or glasses that aren't wearing them we should be concerned about. Not the people smart enough to deal with a quite common medical condition

  5. Actually, it was Big News back in 1983 when a sharp White House photog spotted the Starkey ITC hearing aids (built for prolapsed canals) in President Reagan's ears.

    And Guess What?

    It touched off a stampede to hearing aid dispensers, as all of a sudden it was "cool" for older people to get them. Within 18 months, volumes tripled.


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