Taking care of your hearing loss can be helpful for your brain. At least, that’s according to a new study by a group of analysts out of the University of Manchester. These analysts examined a group of more than 2000 individuals over the course of approximately twenty years (1996 to 2014). The surprising results? Dealing with your hearing loss can slow dementia by up to 75%.
That’s a considerable number.
But is it actually that surprising? That’s not to detract from the importance of the finding, of course, this is an important statistical correlation between the struggle against dementia and the treatment of hearing loss. But it aligns well with what we currently know: as you get older, it’s crucial to treat your loss of hearing if you want to delay dementia.
What Does This Research on Dementia Mean For me?
Scientific research can be confusing and contradictory (should I eat eggs, should I not eat eggs? How about wine? Will drinking wine help me live longer?). There are countless unrelated causes for this. Because here’s the main point: this new study is yet another piece of evidence that indicates untreated hearing loss can result in or worsen cognitive decline including dementia.
So what does this indicate for you? In many ways, it’s pretty simple: you need to set up an appointment with us immediately if you’ve noticed any loss of hearing. And, if you need a hearing aid, you need to definitely begin using that hearing aid as directed.
Hearing Aids Help Prevent Dementia When You Use Them Regularly
Unfortunately, not everybody falls directly into the habit of wearing a prescribed pair of hearing aids. The often cited reasons why include:
- How hearing aids look worries you. You’d be surprised at the wide variety of designs we have available nowadays. Some styles are so discreet, you may not even see them.
- The hearing aid doesn’t feel like it works the way it should. Many people need to have their settings adjusted, and calibration problems are definitely something that can be addressed by our hearing specialists.
- It’s hard to make out voices. Your brain doesn’t always immediately adjust to understanding voices. There are some things we can recommend, like reading along with an audiobook, that can make this situation easier.
- The hearing aid doesn’t feel like it fits well. If you are having this issue, please contact us. We can help make it fit better.
Clearly using your hearing aids is important to your health and future mental faculties. If you’re struggling with any of the above, come see us for an adjustment. Quite often the answer will take patience and time, but working with your hearing professional to ensure your hearing aids are working for you is a part of the process.
And taking into consideration these new findings, managing your hearing loss is more significant than it ever has been. Hearing aids are protecting your hearing health and your mental health so it’s vital to be serious about treatment.
Dementia And Hearing Aids, What’s The Connection?, What’s The Relationship?
So what’s the real link between loss of hearing and dementia? Specialists themselves aren’t exactly sure, but some theories are related to social solitude. Some people, when faced with hearing loss, become less socially involved. Another theory has to do with sensory stimulation. Over time, if a person loses sensory stimulation, such as hearing loss, the brain gets less activity which then causes cognitive decline.
You hear better with a hearing aid. And that can help keep your brain active, delivering a more potent natural defense against dementia and cognitive decline. That’s why treating hearing loss can slow dementia by up to 75% percent and why it shouldn’t be surprising that there is a connection between the two.