Connection between hearing loss and dementia
Hearing loss in old age is more than just an inconvenience. Some people are gradually losing touch with their social relationships because it can be frustrating and embarrassing not to hear. In addition, hearing loss can trigger a range of health problems and also worsen dementia symptoms.
In hearing loss, many people think that this is "one of those things that happens when we get older," Dr. Colin Driscoll, an ear, nose and throat doctor of the renowned Mayo Clinic (USA) in a recent post. But he points out that hearing loss can trigger a range of health problems, including the worsening of dementia symptoms.
Most hearing loss can be resolved
"If you have a hearing loss, you are more and more dedicated to your cognitive ability and try to understand what you have said. My brain is working overtime to sort words and understand sentences, "explains Dr. Driscoll.
So if all the energy is spent on using it for "the simple task of listening to and understanding speech, it is not available for my other activities. It will not cause Alzheimer's disease or structural dementia, but it will change your cognitive abilities, "says the doctor.
According to the ENT specialist, most hearing losses can be resolved with hearing aids or cochlear implants.
Improving hearing reduces health risks
"There are indications that improving hearing improves cognition and that there could possibly be more meaningful connections. We know that improving hearing reduces the risk of social isolation and depression – which we know to be related to falls, high blood pressure, diabetes and cardiovascular disease, "says Dr. Driscoll.
Improve quality of life and health
This is confirmed by scientific research. For example, a few months ago, researchers from the University of Michigan reported in the Journal of American Geriatrics Society a study suggesting that hearing aids could protect the elderly from dementia, depression, and falls.
The researchers found that the relative risk of diagnosing dementia was 18 percent lower in participants who wore a hearing aid, the relative risk of depression or anxiety was reduced by 11 percent, and the relative risk of fall injuries was reduced by 13 percent.
A simple hearing test followed by appropriate interventions can improve your quality of life and your health, concludes the Mayo Clinic article. (Ad)
- Mayo Clinic: Mayo Clinic Minute: The hearing loss and dementia connection, (Available on: 10.11.2019), Mayo Clinic
- Journal of American Geriatrics Society: Can Hearing Aids Delay Time to Diagnosis of Dementia, Depression, or Falls in Older Adults ?, (Available on Nov. 10, 2019), Journal of American Geriatrics Society
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