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Q: "Is There A Definitive Link Between Hearing Loss and Alzheimer's?"

A: Poor hearing not only affects your everyday life, it can affect your long-term brain health! Many studies have shown a significant link between hearing loss and dementia, which may lead to Alzheimer's. Processing auditory information uses a significant portion of the brain. Sound travels through your ear to nerves that send signals to the brain. The sounds are processed in the brain putting the information from your ears into speech. But, if the brain cannot hear that information due to hearing loss, then brain activity lessens. This causes a reduction in gray matter of the brain over time. In other words, your brain shrinks! Patients with dementia and Alzheimer's can receive appropriate hearing loss treatment, and in turn, reduce their cognitive decline. Therefore, it is imperative that those being diagnosed with dementia have hearing testing to determine if hearing loss is contributing to the patient's dementia. The symptoms of dementia and Alzheimer's can mimic hearing loss.

THE FACTS:

  • 83% of patients diagnosed with dementia also have hearing loss.
  • A mild hearing loss doubles the risk of dementia and a moderate hearing loss increases the risk of dementia five-fold.
  • Mild hearing loss is linked to brain atrophy. Those with hearing loss have less gray matter and decreased brain activity in their auditory cortex.
  • Early treatment is essential in restoring cognitive function for speech perception.

WHEN TREATED WITH HEARING AIDS:

  • 33% of patients diagnosed with Alzheimer's were reclassified to a less severe category.
  • Improvement in memory of patients with dementia increased, hearing aids can boost cognitive function 50% within a year.
  • 100% of caregivers said behavior improved, social interaction increased, patients were less depressed and with a better attitude, and in all cases their relationships improved.

Call Toll-Free at (855) 203-5918 to schedule a free hearing screening at Hear USA in one of their locations in Bethel Park, Delmont, Monroeville, or Washington. For more information, please visit HearUSA.com.

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