Let’s be clear: there are a number of ways that you can maintain your mental acuteness and ward off disorders like cognitive decline, dementia, and Alzheimer’s disease. Remaining socially active is one of the most significant while engaging in the workforce appears to be another. Regardless of the method, though, treating hearing loss by using hearing aids makes these activities much easier and contributes in its own way to combating cognitive issues.
Many studies show that the disorders listed above are all connected to neglected hearing loss. What follows is a look at why hearing loss can lead to serious problems with your mental health and how strategies like hearing aids can help you keep your brain functioning at a higher level for a longer period of time.
The Relationship Between Hearing Loss And Cognitive Decline
Scientists at Johns Hopkins have conducted numerous studies over the years to determine the link between cognitive decline and hearing loss. The same story was revealed by each study: individuals with hearing loss experienced 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 specifically caused by hearing loss there is certainly a connection. The leading theories indicate that your brain must work overtime when you can’t effectively process sounds. That means that activities such as cognition and memory, which demand more energy, can’t function at full capacity because your brain has to spend so much of that energy on more basic tasks.
Your mental health can also be seriously impacted by hearing loss. Research has shown that hearing loss is connected to anxiety, depression, and might even influence schizophrenia. All of these disorders also produce cognitive decline – as noted above, one of the best ways to preserve your mental sharpness is to stay socially engaged. In many instances, hearing loss causes people to feel self-conscious out in public, which means they’ll turn to seclusion instead. The lack of human interaction can lead to the other mental health issues listed above and eventually lead to cognitive impairments.
How a Hearing Aid Can Help You Safeguard Your Mental Faculties
Hearing aids are possibly one of the best tools we have to preserve mental sharpness and fight disorders such as dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. Unfortunately, most people who need hearing aids don’t use them. It may be a stigma or a previous negative experience that keeps people using hearing aids, but the fact is that they are proven to help people hear better and retain their cognitive functions for longer periods of time.
There are circumstances where particular sounds will have to be relearned because they’ve been forgotten after prolonged hearing damage. It’s essential to let your brain get back to processing more important tasks and hearing aids can do just that by preventing 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.