Disability and Functioning (Noninstitutionalized Adults Aged 18 and Over)

Data are for the U.S.

Selected sensory problems
  • Number of adults with hearing trouble: 41.3 million
  • Percent of adults with hearing trouble: 16.5%
  • Number of adults with vision trouble: 32.2 million
  • Percent of adults with vision trouble: 12.9%

Source: Summary Health Statistics Tables for U.S. Adults: National Health Interview Survey, 2018, Tables A-6b, A-6c pdf icon[PDF – 147 KB]

Difficulties in physical functioning
  • Number of adults unable (or very difficult) to walk a quarter mile: 19.4 million
  • Percent of adults unable (or very difficult) to walk a quarter mile: 7.8%
  • Number of adults with any physical functioning difficulty: 40.7 million
  • Percent of adults with any physical functioning difficulty: 16.3%

Source: Summary Health Statistics Tables for U.S. Adults: National Health Interview Survey, 2018, Tables A-10b, A-10c pdf icon[PDF – 263 KB]

Level of reported difficulty in six domains of functioning (seeing, hearing, mobility, communication, cognition, self-care)
  • Number of adults aged 18 and over reporting a lot of difficulty or cannot do at all in at least one domain of functioning: 20.7 million (2017)
  • Percent of adults aged 18 and over reporting a lot of difficulty or cannot do at all in at least one domain of functioning: 8.7% (2017)
  • Number of adults aged 65 and over reporting a lot of difficulty or cannot do at all in at least one domain of functioning: 9.5 million (2017)
  • Percent of adults aged 65 and over reporting a lot of difficulty or cannot do at all in at least one domain of functioning: 19.5% (2017)

Source: Health, United States, 2018, table 15 pdf icon[PDF – 9.8 MB]

Need help with personal care
  • Percent of adults aged 65-74 who need help with personal care from other persons: 3.9%
  • Percent of adults aged 75 and over who need help with personal care from other persons: 11.6%

Source: Summary Health Statistics Tables for the U.S. Population: National Health Interview Survey, 2018, Table P-3c pdf icon[PDF – 104 KB]

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Page last reviewed: May 3, 2017