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Hearing Loss and Dementia

By September 9, 2021May 19th, 2024No Comments

Research  over the last decade or more has established a strong link between hearing loss and the onset of dementia. Researchers at John Hopkins cite a five fold risk in persons with severe hearing loss developing dementia compared to people with normal hearing levels. People with mild to moderate hearing loss were three times more likely to develop dementia.

A number of theories regarding the causal link between hearing loss and dementia are currently being considered. One major theory suggests that having to concentrate more on  conversations due to hearing loss causes additional strain on the brain. This then robs other brain functions of resources such as in the temporal lobe area that processes memory function. Another theory suggests that the reduction in brain volume due to hearing loss may be a contributing factor in developing dementia.

Hearing loss is also know to cause isolation, loneliness and depression over time. These are other major risk factors to the onset of dementia.

A hearing aid is a medical device that is proven to help people with mild to severe hearing loss.  Research indicates that treating hearing loss may be one of the most effective ways of reducing the risk of developing dementia.

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