Hearing Aids Slow Dementia by '75%', a new study shows

As people begin to age there are a number of age-related health obstacles that decline the overall wellbeing of individuals. Scientists have been researching the links between different types of age-related brain function decline and have made a remarkable discovery.

In a study that lasted for nearly 20 years up to 2014, thousands of individuals were aksed to complete word memory tests over this period of time. The decline in the memory ability was then measured against the time at which they purchased hearing aids.

Whilst hearing aids cannot prevent or reverse decline, they have a profound effect in slowing the rates of dementia by 75%.

 

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Based on the study, the team at the University of Manchester in the UK said that hearing aids should be a a right for all elderly persons and those individuals that need them. Indeed, in the UK hearing aids are readily prescribed by the NHS free of charge.

In the US to receive the benefits of hearing aids most people have to save up for a number of years, however in that time frame cognitive decline can take over.

Dr Piers Dawes said: "These studies underline just how important it is to overcome the barriers which deny people from accessing hearing and visual aids.

"It's not really certain why hearing and visual problems have an impact on cognitive decline, but I'd guess that isolation, stigma and the resultant lack of physical activity that are linked to hearing and vision problems might have something to do with it.

"And there are barriers to overcome - people might not want to wear hearing aids because of stigma attached to wearing them, or they feel the amplification is not good enough or they're not comfortable.”

Our founding principle at Hearing Delivered is that basic access to medical devices should be improved. We do not kid ourselves- these hearing aids are still an investment despite only a nominal mark up fee. However, as more and more people begin to need hearing loss (currently 50 million in the US) we will be introducing new telecare features and home visits as standard to coincide with your purchase.

The new research was published in PLOS ONE and the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.