Make no mistake: Keeping your mind sharp and preventing cognitive disorders like dementia and Alzheimer’s can be accomplished in numerous ways. Social engagement and participation in the workforce are among the most notable. Whichever methods are used to deal with cognitive decline, however, keeping your hearing strong and using hearing aids if you need them will be tremendously helpful.
These disorders, according to many studies, are often directly linked to hearing loss. This article will lay out the relationship between cognitive decline and hearing loss and how using hearing aids can decrease the probability of these conditions becoming an imminent problem.
The Link Between Hearing Loss And Cognitive Decline
Scientists at Johns Hopkins have conducted several studies over the years to determine the connection between hearing loss and cognitive decline. The same story was told by each study: cognitive decline was more prevalent with people who experience hearing loss. One study showed, in fact, that there was a 24% higher instance of Alzheimer’s in people who have impaired hearing.
Hearing loss alone does not cause dementia, but there is a connection between the two conditions. The leading theories indicate that your brain has to work overtime when you can’t effectively process sounds. That means that tasks such as cognition and memory, which require more energy, can’t function at full capacity because your brain has to spend so much of that energy on more basic tasks.
Hearing loss can also have a significant impact on your mental health. Studies have shown that hearing loss is linked to anxiety, depression, and might even influence schizophrenia. All of these conditions also lead to cognitive decline – as noted above, one of the optimum ways to safeguard your mental acuity is to remain socially active. Often, people who have hearing loss will resort to self isolation because they feel self conscious around other people. The mental issues listed above are frequently the outcome of the lack of human contact and can inevitably produce significant cognitive decline.
Keeping Your Mental Faculties Acute With Hearing Aids
Hearing aids are perhaps one of the best tools we have to maintain mental sharpness and combat conditions such as dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. The issue is that only one in seven of the millions of people over the age of 50 who deal with hearing loss actually wear a hearing aid. It might be a stigma or a previous negative experience that keeps people wearing hearing aids, but in fact, hearing aids have been shown to help people preserve their cognitive function by helping them hear better.
There are circumstances where specific sounds will need to be relearned because they’ve been forgotten after extended hearing damage. It’s important to help your brain go back to processing more important tasks and hearing aids can do just that by stopping this issue 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 start hearing better get in touch with us.