Make no mistake: Keeping your mind clear and preventing cognitive conditions like dementia and Alzheimer’s can be accomplished in a number of ways. Social engagement and involvement in the workforce are among the most significant. Whichever methods you employ to combat cognitive decline, however, keeping your hearing strong and wearing hearing aids if you need them will be immensely helpful.
These conditions, according to many studies, are often directly connected to hearing loss. The following is a look at why hearing loss can cause extreme problems with your mental health and how solutions like hearing aids can help you keep your brain functioning at a higher level for a longer period of time.
How Hearing Loss Contributes to Cognitive Decline
The link between hearing loss and cognitive decline has been studied several times over the years by researchers at Johns Hopkins. The same story was revealed by each study: individuals with hearing loss struggled with dementia and cognitive decline in higher rates than those without. One study revealed, in fact, that there was a 24% higher instance of Alzheimer’s in individuals who have impaired hearing.
Though dementia isn’t directly caused by hearing loss there is certainly a link. The leading theories indicate that your brain must work overtime when you can’t effectively process sounds. That means your brain is using more precious energy on fairly simple tasks, leaving a lot less of that energy for more advanced processes like memory or cognitive functions.
Hearing loss can also have a severe affect on your mental health. Studies have shown that hearing loss is connected to anxiety, depression, and might even influence schizophrenia. Staying socially active, as mentioned, is the best way to maintain your mental health and preserve your cognitive ability. Frequently, people who have hearing loss will turn to self isolation because they feel self conscious in public. The lack of human contact can cause the other mental health problems mentioned above and potentially lead to cognitive impairments.
How a Hearing Aid Can Help You Keep Your Resolution
One of the best tools we have to fight dementia and other cognition conditions such as Alzheimer’s is hearing aids. The problem is that only one out of seven of the millions of people 50 or older who suffer from hearing impairment actually wear a hearing aid. People may steer clear of 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.
When your hearing is harmed for a prolonged amount of time, the brain could forget how to identify some common sounds and will need to learn them all over again. A hearing aid can either prevent that scenario from happening in the first place or assist you in relearning those sounds, which will allow your brain to focus on other, more essential tasks.
If you want to find out what options are available to help you begin hearing better get in touch with us.