Let’s be clear: there are several ways that you can maintain your mental acuity and ward off disorders such as cognitive decline, dementia, and Alzheimer’s disease. Staying social is one of the most essential while engaging in the workforce seems to be another. Regardless of the method, though, managing hearing loss through hearing aids makes these activities a lot easier and contributes in its own way to combating cognitive problems.
Many studies show that the conditions listed above are all linked to untreated hearing loss. This article will lay out the link 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
Researchers at Johns Hopkins have carried out several studies over the years to determine the link between hearing loss and cognitive decline. The results of each study told the same story: individuals with hearing loss suffered from dementia and cognitive decline in higher rates than those without. In fact, one study demonstrated that people with hearing loss were 24% more likely to develop Alzheimer’s than people with healthy hearing.
Hearing loss alone does not cause dementia, but there is a connection between these conditions. The primary theories suggest that your brain must work overtime when you can’t effectively process sounds. That means that activities such as memory and cognition, which demand more energy, can’t function efficiently because your brain has to use so much of that energy on more simple tasks.
Hearing loss can also have a significant impact on your mental health. Anxiety, social isolation, and depression have all been associated with hearing loss and there might even be a connection with schizophrenia. Remaining socially engaged, as noted, is the best way to maintain your mental health and preserve your cognitive clarity. Frequently, individuals who have hearing loss will turn to self isolation because they feel self conscious around other people. The mental problems mentioned above are commonly the result of the lack of human contact and can inevitably produce significant cognitive decline.
Keeping Your Mental Faculties Sharp With Hearing Aids
One of the best tools we have to fight dementia and other cognitive disorders like Alzheimer’s is hearing aids. The issue is that only one in seven of the millions of people over the age of 50 who suffer from hearing impairment actually wear a hearing aid. People may avoid hearing aids because they’ve had a negative experience in the past or maybe 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 let 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 learn what options are available to help you begin hearing better get in touch with us.