Alzheimer’s & Brain Awareness Month: Untreated Hearing Loss Linked to Higher Risk of Dementia

June is Alzheimer’s & Brain Awareness Month and we are talking about the connection between hearing and the brain. Did you know that we actually hear when our brain processes sound? That’s right, we don’t actually hear with our ears. However, when our hearing is impaired, it ends up having a negative impact on the brain. In fact, studies have uncovered that hearing loss is linked to higher risk of dementia.

Your Ears & Your Brain

Your ears send sounds to your brain to decode and process them. However, if your ears are not hearing properly over time your brain can begin to forget how to interpret speech and other sounds. This occurs much in the same way that muscles lose their strength and ability when they aren’t used. This is why it is so important to seek treatment if you feel your hearing is not as sharp as it once was. There has been a great deal of research on this topic in recent years, and recent studies have helped us learn more.

What You Should Know

  • The longer hearing loss goes untreated, the greater the chance of it having a negative effect on the brain’s ability to interpret sounds and speech. (source)
  • Study subjects who had hearing loss ended up with higher rates of dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease. (source)
  • People with hearing loss had a 24% higher chance of having Alzheimer’s. (source)
  • The more profound hearing loss is, the greater the chance of developing dementia. (source)

Keeping Up with Your Hearing Health is Important

We should clarify that the presence of hearing loss is not necessarily what causes dementia or Alzheimer’s; it is the resulting effects of said hearing loss. Although the exact cause is not yet known, the research data all points to the link between untreated hearing loss and higher incidence of dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease. This means that getting regular hearing assessments and taking care of your hearing health is not something that you should ignore.

Make an Appointment at Hearing Solutions, Inc Today!

If you would like to learn more about hearing aids, or if you still have questions, please contact us at (386) 269-1779 or click here to schedule an appointment today. We have three convenient Northern Florida hearing loss clinic locations: Dowling Park, Live Oak, or Lake City.

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