Hearing Loss and Dementia
How does hearing loss potentially lead to dementia?
A growing body of research is pointing to the idea that hearing loss and dementia are linked. Even a mild hearing loss is thought to double your chances of getting dementia. The risk increases as your hearing loss develops. Those with moderate hearing loss are three times more likely to develop dementia, and those with severe hearing loss are five times more likely.
A lack of social interaction
Signs of Dementia
Trouble performing routine tasks
Symptoms of hearing loss and dementia are often comparable–not responding to questions or reacting incorrectly, or struggling to comprehend sounds, including conversation. Doctors often misdiagnose hearing loss as dementia: individuals may be treated for a disorder which they do not have, but their hearing loss continues untreated. Untreated hearing loss can make it harder for someone to deal with dementia –and can aggravate dementia-related behaviors, such as aggression and anxiety.
Treating hearing loss can lower risk of dementia
Hearing loss is therefore a major risk factor for developing dementia but, fortunately, the impacts of hearing loss can be mitigated. We may be able to reduce our risk of developing dementia by taking steps to address our hearing loss. Research indicates that the use of hearing aids may decrease our probability of developing dementia.
Seniors with hearing loss are considerably more susceptible to developing dementia over time than those who manage to preserve their hearing, according to research by academics from Johns Hopkins and the National Institute on Aging.
A French study also supports this conclusion. This study followed almost 3,800 individuals over a 25-year period and discovered that seniors and elderly individuals who say they have hearing loss and do not use hearing aids have a much greater chance of developing dementia. The research also found that those who used hearing aids eliminated this increased risk.
Although research in this area is ongoing, the signs are indeed encouraging that treating hearing loss through the use of hearing aids could be a surprisingly important way to reduce the risk of dementia in our society.
If you think that you could benefit from the use of hearing aids, our professional team can assist you choose the correct one for you. But before we can do that, we need to understand what your hearing requirements are. Please contact us today for a hearing test.