Taking care of your loss of hearing can be helpful for your brain. At least, that’s according to a new study by a group of researchers from the University of Manchester. These researchers examined a team of around 2000 individuals over the course of almost 2 decades (1996 to 2014). The surprising outcome? Dementia can be delayed by up to 75% by treating hearing loss.
That is not a small number.
But is it actually that surprising? The significance of the finding, of course, is still useful, that sort of statistical relationship between hearing loss treatment and the fight against dementia is noteworthy and shocking. But it coordinates well with what we already know: as you age, it’s essential to treat your loss of hearing if you want to delay cognitive decline.
What Does This Research on Dementia Mean For me?
Scientific studies can be confusing and contradictory (should I eat eggs, shouldn’t I eat eggs? How about wine? Will that help me live longer?). The causes for that are long, diverse, and not all that relevant to our topic here. Because here’s the main point: yet further proof, this research indicates untreated hearing loss can lead to or worsen cognitive decline including dementia.
So what does this mean for you? It’s simple in several ways: you need to come see us immediately if you’ve observed any hearing loss. And you need to begin using that hearing aid as directed if you discover you need one.
Hearing Aids Help Prevent Dementia When You Use Them Correctly
Regrettably, not everyone falls right into the habit of using a prescribed pair of hearing aids. The often cited reasons why include:
- The hearing aid isn’t feeling like it fits properly. If you are having this problem, please give us a call. We can help make it fit better.
- You’re anxious about how hearing aids look. Presently, we have lots of variations available which might amaze you. Some models are so discreet, you might not even notice them.
- Voices are difficult to understand. Your brain doesn’t always immediately adjust to understanding voices. There are things we can recommend, such as reading along with an audiobook, that can help make this process go more smoothly.
- The hearing aid doesn’t seem 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.
Your future mental abilities and even your health in general are clearly impacted by using hearing aids. If you’re trying to cope with any of the above, get in touch with us for an adjustment. At times the answer will take patience and time, but working with your hearing professional to make sure your hearing aids are working for you is just part of the process.
And in light of these new findings, managing your hearing loss is more important than ever before. Hearing aids are protecting your hearing health and your mental health so it’s essential to be serious about treatment.
What’s The Link Between Dementia And Hearing Aids?
So why are these two conditions dementia and loss of hearing even associated in the first place? Experts themselves aren’t exactly certain, but some theories are associated with social isolation. When coping with loss of hearing, some people seclude themselves socially. Yet another theory refers to sensory stimulation. Over the years, if a person loses sensory stimulation, such as hearing loss, the brain gets less activity which then leads to mental decline.
You hear better with a hearing aid. And that can help keep your brain active, offering a more robust natural defense against dementia and cognitive decline. That’s why a link between the two shouldn’t be unexpected and why hearing loss treatments can delay dementia by as much as 75%.