Published on: February 17, 2016
by Nicole Stempack for Long-Term Living:
Researchers are speaking up about hearing loss.
The worse a person’s hearing, the more likely they are to develop dementia over the next 10 years. Mild hearing loss doubles the risk of developing dementia, moderate loss triples it, and severe loss makes it five times as likely.
Doctors must stop thinking of hearing loss as a natural part of aging, researcher Frank Lin, MD, PhD, said at the American Association for the Advancement of Science’s annual conference in Washington, D.C.
“Our research suggests that hearing loss could be another ‘hit’ on the brain in many ways,” says Lin, an associate professor at Johns Hopkins University in the Daily Mail.
Hearing loss may have a direct effect on the risk of dementia, and addressing hearing loss may have a bigger effect on reducing dementia than other public health measures.
Lin’s research has found the prevalence of hearing loss doubles with each decade. Nearly two-thirds of adults age 70 and older have meaningful hearing loss that affects daily communication.
Lin also found age-related brain shrinkage is accelerated in older people with hearing loss, who lose an additional cubic centimeter of grey matter a year.
Research has found key brain regions involved in hearing are also involved in recall. It’s also thought an increased strain to hear uses brainpower that would normally be devoted to memory and the social isolation of hearing loss might increase risk of dementia.
Thanks to the ongoing support of our partner Brain Canada, and The Citrine Foundation of Canada, Women’s Brain Health Initiative’s newest edition of MIND OVER MATTER has just been published. Loaded with interesting science-based articles, MIND OVER...
On December 2nd, in celebration of Women’s Brain Health Day, join thousands of others and take part in the Stand Ahead® Memory Challenge to stand up against research bias and stand ahead for women’s brain...
YOU’RE INVITED! On December 2nd, the second annual Women’s Brain Health Day, take the memory challenge and help us combat brain-aging diseases that disproportionately affect women. Join CTV’s Pattie Lovett-Reid and Anne-Marie Mediwake, along...
The material presented through the Think Tank feature on this website is in no way intended to replace professional medical care or attention by a qualified practitioner. WBHI strongly advises all questioners and viewers using this feature with health problems to consult a qualified physician, especially before starting any treatment. The materials provided on this website cannot and should not be used as a basis for diagnosis or choice of treatment. The materials are not exhaustive and cannot always respect all the most recent research in all areas of medicine.