How Hearing Loss Solutions Can Help with Dementia

People who suffer from moderate to severe hearing loss are far more likely to develop dementia. Several major studies have shown that adults with hearing loss are more likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease and dementia compared to those with normal hearing. The risk escalates as a person’s hearing deteriorates.

Let’s take a closer look at the connection between hearing loss and dementia—and what you can do about it.

The link between hearing loss and Alzheimer’s

Research demonstrates that hearing loss leads to brain changes that put you at risk for cognitive disease. When the part of the brain responsible for hearing becomes inactive, this leads to tissue loss and changes in the structure of the brain. This atrophy spreads further in people with declining hearing.

Another problem is that the brain becomes overwhelmed. When you’re straining to hear, the brain works overtime just to understand what people are saying. If you’re straining to hear all day, then you’re expending additional mental energy to complete normal tasks. This then affects the brain’s resources for other functions like memory, thought and action.

Hearing loss combined with social isolation

Studies have shown that people with untreated hearing loss are more likely than others to live in isolation. This leads to feelings of loneliness and mental health issues like depression, anxiety and paranoia. These individuals are less likely to participate in social activities and organized events. This withdrawal makes them more likely to suffer from dementia and Alzheimer’s.

That’s because social interaction stimulates the brain. Interacting with other people and going to new places means that you’re giving your brain the exercise it needs. Without these new interactions, the brain can slide into decline.

Hearing loss solutions

Fortunately, if you’re suffering from hearing loss, there are solutions out there to help. Improved hearing can lead to a more active social life and a stronger mind. Several studies have found a link between hearing aids and improvement in personal independence, mental abilities and emotional and physical health. This creates a kind of virtuous cycle: Leading a happy, full life means your brain stays active.

Identifying a hearing issue early and having it addressed through appropriate treatment is key to minimizing cognitive risk later in life. If you do so, you won’t have to break any bad habits, like being socially isolated. You also won’t have to retrain your brain how to hear, which is a problem for those who have suffered from hearing loss over the long term.

The fact is that those with neglected hearing loss often have brain shrinkage, but you can avoid this cognitive deficit through the use of a high-quality hearing aid.

Since 2005, Vancouver Hearing Aid Center has offered a full-service retail sales clinic. We do it all, from hearing aid evaluations to sales, fittings, consultations and more. Our team of experts has more than five decades of combined experience in the field. Get in touch with us today to find out more about our services, or stop by our location.