Make no mistake: Keeping your mind clear and preventing cognitive disorders like dementia and Alzheimer’s can be accomplished in several ways. Social engagement and participation in the workforce are among the most significant. Whichever methods you employ to deal with cognitive decline, however, keeping your hearing strong and using hearing aids if you need them will be immensely helpful.
Numerous studies show that the disorders listed above are all linked to neglected hearing loss. This article will lay out the relationship between cognitive decline and hearing loss and how wearing hearing aids can decrease the likelihood of these conditions becoming an impending issue.
How Hearing Loss Contributes to Cognitive Decline
The link between hearing loss and cognitive decline has been studied several times over the years by scientists at Johns Hopkins. The same story was revealed by each study: cognitive decline was more prevalent with individuals who experience hearing loss. One study demonstrated, in fact, that there was a 24% higher instance of Alzheimer’s in individuals who have impaired hearing.
Hearing loss alone does not cause dementia, but there is a connection between the two conditions. When you can’t effectively process sound your brain has to work harder according to leading theories. That means your brain is spending more valuable energy on relatively simple activities, leaving a lot less of that energy for more complicated processes such as cognitive function and memory.
Hearing loss can also have a severe affect on your mental health. Research has shown that hearing loss is connected to anxiety, depression, and may even influence schizophrenia. Staying socially engaged, as noted, is the best way to safeguard your mental health and preserve your cognitive clarity. In many cases, hearing loss causes individuals to feel self-conscious out in public, which means they’ll turn to isolation instead. The lack of human contact can lead to the other mental health problems listed above and potentially lead to cognitive impairments.
Keeping Your Mental Faculties Sharp With Hearing Aids
One of the best tools we have to fight dementia and other cognitive conditions such as Alzheimer’s is hearing aids. The issue is that only one in seven of the millions of people 50 or older who suffer from hearing loss actually wear a hearing aid. People may stay away from hearing aids because they’ve had a bad experience in the past or perhaps they have some kind of stigma, but the fact is that they are proven to help people hear better and maintain their cognitive functions for longer periods of time.
There are situations where particular sounds will need to be relearned because they’ve been forgotten after prolonged hearing damage. It’s essential to help your brain get back to processing more important tasks and hearing aids can do just that by stopping this problem in the first place and helping you relearn any sounds the brain has forgotten.
If you want to find out what options are available to help you begin hearing better get in touch with us.