Keller Texas Ear Nose Throat Doctors at Texas ENT Center

Does Hearing Loss Cause Dementia?

February 3rd, 2017

Once an individual starts to display signs of hearing loss, it’s common that the person will wait 10-12 years before seeking medical attention for the hearing loss. But what if prolonging seeking medical attention increases the chance for getting Dementia?

Does hearing Loss Cause Dementia

Johns Hopkins University created a study of 1,984 patients to determine if Dementia is linked to hearing loss. The study concluded that those with hearing loss are 30-40% more likely to have Dementia later in life. This proves that hearing loss poses a risk for getting Dementia.

Johns Hopkins University proved hearing loss can cause Dementia, but how is Dementia linked to hearing loss?

  • When an individual with hearing loss is in an environment where they are straining to hear, this creates a strain on the brain. Imagine a muscle that’s been worked too hard for too long. If the muscle never gets a break, it risks becoming torn. This is the same concept with overusing the brain due to hearing loss. The brain never gets a break. When an individual is unable to hear, that person will use their brain twice as hard to strain to listen to conversations.
  • Another link is that hearing-impaired individuals often withdraw from social environments. This causes the brain to become sluggish due to a lack of regular interaction with other individuals. In a sense, the brain starts to digress.

Does hearing Loss Cause Dementia

Some may think that once the hearing is lost, there’s no turning back. Opposing this belief, there is something that can be done to help increase hearing and possibly reduce the risk of Dementia or Alzheimer’s Disease. Hearing aids and hearing protection are vital tools that can be used to decrease the chances of Dementia:

  • Hearing aids. Contrary to popular belief, hearing aids are becoming a widely-accepted device in society. They are also used on all age ranges, from children to young adults to the elderly. In fact, 65% of those with hearing loss are under the age of 60. About 60% of those under the age of 60 are still in school or working. Hearing aids range in size and appearance. Depending on the manufacturer that’s used and the severity of hearing loss, some hearing aids can even be placed inside the ear canal so that it’s not visible to other people.
  • Hearing protection. Individuals with or without hearing loss should always use hearing protection. Just because an individual may have hearing loss does not mean they should not protect their hearing. Hearing loss can increase without using protection which could eventually lead to permanent hearing loss that’s untreatable.

If you feel you’re experiencing hearing loss, it’s important to have your hearing checked as soon as the onset begins. At Texas ENT Center, we have an Audiologist on staff that’s readily available to assess your hearing and determine treatment options. Contact our office today to prevent any further loss to your hearing!

Call us today 817-431-7985 to schedule an appointment for your child to see one of our family-friendly doctors.

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Office hours: Monday - Friday 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
Office phone: (817) 431-7985
Office location: 4601 Heritage Trace Parkway, Fort Worth, TX 76244 (at the intersection of Beach Street and Heritage Trace Parkway)

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