Make no mistake: there are a few ways that you can maintain your mental acuteness and stave off disorders such as dementia, cognitive decline, and Alzheimer’s disease. Social engagement and participation in the workforce are among the most noteworthy. No matter the method, though, managing hearing loss through hearing aids makes these activities much easier and contributes in its own way to battling cognitive issues.
These conditions, according to numerous studies, are frequently directly linked to hearing loss. What follows is a look at why hearing loss can lead to extreme issues with your mental health and how strategies like hearing aids can help you keep your brain running at a higher level for a longer period of time.
The Connection Between Hearing Loss And Cognitive Decline
The connection between hearing loss and cognitive decline has been examined numerous times over the years by researchers at Johns Hopkins. The results of each study told the same story: individuals 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 impaired hearing.
Hearing loss by itself does not cause dementia, but there is a link between the two conditions. When you can’t effectively process sound your brain has to work overtime according to leading theories. That means that activities such as cognition and memory, which require more energy, can’t function efficiently because your brain has to use so much of that energy on more basic tasks.
Hearing loss can also have a serious impact on your mental health. Anxiety, social isolation, and depression have all been associated with hearing loss and there could even be a connection with schizophrenia. Staying socially active, as noted, is the best way to maintain your mental health and preserve your cognitive clarity. Often, people who have hearing loss will turn to self isolation because they feel self conscious around other people. The lack of human contact can lead to the other mental health problems listed above and potentially lead to cognitive impairments.
Keeping Your Mental Faculties Acute With Hearing Aids
One of the best tools we have to combat dementia and other cognitive disorders like Alzheimer’s is hearing aids. The issue is that only one in seven of the millions of people 50 or older who suffer from hearing loss actually use a hearing aid. People might stay away from hearing aids because they’ve had a negative experience in the past or maybe they hold some kind of stigma, but the fact is that they are proven to help people hear better and retain 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 everyday sounds and will have to relearn them. It’s essential to let your brain go 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.
Get in touch with us today to find out what options are available to help you begin hearing better in this decade and beyond.