Along with many other individuals, celebrities in the film, TV and music fields have experienced hearing problems, but those issues did not prevent them from achieving success. According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, more than 28 million American adults have some form of hearing problem that an auditory assistance device can solve.
Celebrities Robert Redford and Ted Hanson Benefitted from Auditory Aids
The Academy Award-winning actor and director Robert Redford enjoyed above-average hearing for his age until his role in a 2013 movie required him to perform scenes submerged in water. The end result was an ear infection that took away more than half of his hearing. The hearing loss was irreversible, but Redford’s decision to begin using hearing aids enabled him to continue working in several films before announcing his retirement in 2022.
When the award-winning actor Ted Danson started using auditory aids, he began to hear previously muddled conversations and sounds clearly. Danson said his device-enhanced hearing capabilities changed his life and improved his interactions with colleagues, friends and other celebrities.
Hearing Problems Caused by Physical Trauma and Botched Surgery
A physical trauma caused Halle Berry to lose most of her left-side hearing. The Academy-Award winning actress opened up during an interview about an ex-boyfriend who caused her to suffer a punctured eardrum. The injury reduced her hearing by 80% on one side. She’s been wearing hearing aids since 2006.
As a child, comedian and late-night TV host Stephen Colbert had a serious ear problem that required surgery; doctors found a tumor in his ear. An operation removed it by “scooping” it out, but the botched surgical procedure resulted in a permanently deaf right ear.
Common Childhood Illnesses That Led to Severe Hearing Issues
Emmy-nominated actor Rob Lowe and Academy Award-winning actress Holly Hunter noted that they contracted mumps as children. Both celebrities became deaf in one ear as a result of contracting the viral illness as infants. Hunter famously won her Academy Award for The Piano, a performance she did in American Sign Language.
The actor and bodybuilder Lou Ferrigno lost 80% of his hearing as a child due to preschool ear infections. An audiologist’s evaluation can, however, make a significant difference in matching the right hearing aid to specific needs; Ferrigno has been using a specialized auditory enhancement device since 2012.
Deafness and Tinnitus Affect Singers and Musicians
Although often described as a “ringing in the ears,” tinnitus can include roaring, hissing or buzzing sounds that only the affected individual hears. Deafness typically accompanies tinnitus and can result from exposure to high-volume sounds such as live rock music.
Guitarist, singer and songwriter Eric Clapton revealed his tinnitus and hearing loss as he entered his 70s. Singer Roger Daltry of The Who and his guitarist bandmate Pete Townsend have also suffered major hearing losses.
Audiological Testing Goes Beyond Helping Celebrities
An audiological screening is the first step in learning which hearing aids will help you continue working or enjoying your regular day-to-day activities. We’re a non-profit organization that provides guidance, free testing and representation for the growing community of individuals in need of hearing assistance. If you’re experiencing hearing problems, contact us today to learn more about how HEAR Center can help you to get the most out of life — even if you don’t plan on joining the world of celebrities anytime soon.
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