Make no mistake: Keeping your mind sharp and avoiding cognitive conditions including dementia and Alzheimer’s can be accomplished in several ways. Social engagement and involvement in the workforce are among the most significant. No matter the method, though, treating hearing loss by using hearing aids makes these activities much easier and contributes in its own way to preventing cognitive issues.
Numerous studies show that the conditions listed above are all linked to neglected hearing loss. The following is a look at why hearing loss can cause serious problems with your mental health and how solutions like hearing aids can help you keep your brain running at a higher level for a longer period of time.
How Hearing Loss Contributes to Cognitive Decline
Researchers at Johns Hopkins have carried out several studies over the years to determine the connection between cognitive decline and hearing loss. The same story was revealed by each study: people with hearing loss experienced dementia and cognitive decline in higher rates than those without. One study showed, in fact, that there was a 24% higher instance of Alzheimer’s in individuals who have diminished hearing.
Hearing loss by itself does not cause dementia, but there is a connection between the two conditions. When you can’t properly process sound your brain has to work harder according to leading theories. That means your brain is spending more valuable energy on fairly simple activities, leaving a lot less of that energy for more advanced processes such as memory or cognitive functions.
Hearing loss can also have a serious affect on your mental health. Anxiety, social isolation, and depression have all been linked to hearing loss and there might even be a connection with schizophrenia. Remaining socially engaged, as noted, is the best way to protect your mental health and preserve your cognitive clarity. In many instances, hearing loss causes people to feel self-conscious out in public, which means they’ll turn to isolation instead. The lack of human contact can produce 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 resources we have to combat dementia and other cognition conditions such as Alzheimer’s is hearing aids. Sadly, most people who need hearing aids don’t use them. People might stay away from hearing aids because they’ve had a negative experience in the past or perhaps they hold 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 may 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 occurring in the first place or help you relearn those sounds, which will permit your brain to focus on other, more important tasks.
Contact us right away to find out what options are available to help you begin hearing better in this decade and beyond.