Taking care of your hearing loss can be helpful for your brain. At least, that’s according to a new study from a University of Manchester study group. Over the period of approximately 20 years (1996 to 2014), nearly 2000 people were studied by these investigators. The striking results? Dementia can be slowed by up to 75% by managing your hearing loss.
That is not an insignificant figure.
And yet, it’s not really that unexpected. That’s not to detract from the significance of the finding, of course, that sort of statistical connection between hearing loss treatment and the battle against dementia is important and stunning. But the information we already have coordinates with these findings: treating your hearing loss is vital to slowing cognitive decline as you age.
How am I Impacted by This Research?
Scientific studies can be perplexing and contradictory (should I eat eggs, should I not eat eggs? What about wine? Will drinking wine help me live longer?). The reasons for that are lengthy, varied, and not all that relevant to our discussion here. The bottom line is: yet another piece of evidence, this research suggests untreated hearing loss can result in or exacerbate mental decline including dementia.
So what does this mean for you? It’s straightforward in many ways: if you’ve observed any possible signs of hearing loss, schedule an appointment with us in the near future. And you really should start wearing that hearing aid as advised if you discover you need one.
When You Wear Them Regularly, Hearing Aids Can Help Prevent Dementia
Regrettably, when people are prescribed with hearing aids, they don’t always instantly get into the habit of using them. The usual reasons why include:
- The hearing aid isn’t feeling as if it fits well. If you are suffering from this problem, please get in touch with us. We can help make it fit better.
- The hearing aid doesn’t feel like it works as advertised. Many people need to have their settings adjusted, and calibration problems are definitely something that can be addressed by our hearing specialists.
- Peoples voices are difficult to understand. In some situations, it takes time for your brain to adjust to recognizing voices again. We can recommend things to do to help make this process easier, like reading along with an audiobook.
- How hearing aids look worries you. You’d be surprised at the assortment of designs we have available nowadays. Some models are so subtle, you may not even see them.
Clearly using your hearing aids is essential to your health and future cognitive abilities. If you’re trying to cope with any of the above, get in touch with us for an adjustment. Consulting your hearing expert to make certain your hearing aids are working for you is just part of the process and it demands time and patience.
And in light of these new findings, dealing with your hearing loss is more important than ever before. Be serious about the treatment because hearing aids are safeguarding your hearing and your mental health.
Hearing Aids And Dementia, What’s The Link?
So why are these two problems dementia and hearing loss even associated to begin with? Social solitude is the prominent theory but experts are not 100% certain. Some people, when dealing with loss of hearing, become less socially involved. Yet another theory has to do with sensory stimulation. With time, if a person loses sensory stimulation, like hearing loss, the brain gets less activity which then leads to cognitive decline.
You hear better when you wear your hearing aid. And that can help keep your brain active, creating a more robust natural defense against dementia and cognitive decline. That’s why a link between the two should not be surprising and why hearing loss treatments can slow dementia by as much as 75%.