Experiencing hearing loss affects more than just our auditory perception. Recent studies, subjected to rigorous scientific review, reveal a concerning correlation between untreated hearing loss and cognitive decline, underscoring the broader consequences of neglected auditory health.
I’ve decided to bring this to your attention because it really shows how important it is to look after your hearing, and how scary the consequences can be if you don’t.
Reviewing the Groundbreaking Study
In December 2022, a landmark research piece was published in JAMA Neurology, offering the most comprehensive insights yet into the connection between untreated hearing loss and cognitive decline.
The study encompassed 31 sub-studies and involved 137,484 participants from Europe, North America, Asia, and Australasia, evaluating the link between hearing loss and cognitive decline over a range of two to 25 years.
Key Findings: The Power of Hearing Aids
The study highlights two crucial findings that accentuate the critical role of hearing aids in tackling cognitive decline.
The first finding demonstrates that the use of hearing aids was associated with a 19 percent reduction in long-term cognitive decline. As noted by Dr. Benjamin Tan, the senior study author,
- Reduction in long-term cognitive decline 19% 19%
- Lower risk of progressing to dementia 20% 20%
“Dementia is far easier to prevent than treat, and exceedingly difficult to reverse.”
The second finding indicates that even those already presenting with mild cognitive impairment (“early dementia”) benefited from hearing aids, as they displayed about a 20 percent lower risk of progressing to dementia. This revelation suggests that it’s never too late to begin using hearing aids, but early treatment may significantly aid cognitive preservation.
“In this meta-analysis, the usage of hearing aids and cochlear implants is associated with a decreased risk of subsequent cognitive decline; physicians should strongly encourage their patients with hearing loss to adopt such devices.“ – A key takeaway from the study
Key Observations: The Importance of Auditory Health
The thorough study underscores the vital role of regular hearing tests in maintaining comprehensive health. While many prioritize routine dental, eye, and general health checkups, hearing health often takes a backseat.
The Hearing Center: Your Trusted Hearing and Balance Experts
At The Hearing Center, we’ve proudly served as Pensacola’s trusted hearing and balance experts for years. We understand the profound link between untreated hearing loss and cognitive challenges, and we are dedicated to providing personalized, effective care to our patients.
If you or a loved one has concerns about your hearing, we’re here to help.
We currently have appointments available for new patients. Please call us at either of our offices to schedule a convenient date/time for your visit. Alternatively, you can request a callback, and a friendly member of our team will call you and answer any questions you may have.
Untreated hearing loss can potentially worsen over time. Don’t delay in reaching out for assistance.