Where is My Mind?
Posted by Living Sounds
Hearing loss is NOT JUST something that happens when you get older. We live in a noisy society that keeps getting louder, and our ears have not adapted. To make detecting a hearing loss more challenging, the most common type of hearing loss is one that gradually happens without us even noticing, and it is often family members who will take notice it first.
Yes, hearing loss is something that affects many of us as time progresses; however, there are many factors that can cause hearing loss that we may not be able to avoid. Listening to loud music, working in noisy environments, certain medications, recreational noises, a head injury, illness, and family genetics can all lead to hearing loss.
Often times people wait too long to get their hearing tested. When a person has an untreated hearing loss, the result is often a decrease in word understanding. Why? Well, in a nutshell, when there is a lack of auditory stimulation to the brain, words become forgotten because the brain is not hearing them properly. When it comes to your mind, if you don’t use it, you lose it.
There is also a link between hearing loss and mild cognitive impairment. When a person has an untreated hearing loss, we now know that the ability to understand speech decreases. An untreated hearing loss also affects memory and can lead to stress, fatigue, and depression (to name a few). Put all of those together, and scientific research tells us that this also leads to a greater risk of Dementia.
Fortunately, we, as hearing care professionals, have witnessed word understanding increase when you treat your hearing loss along with daily use of hearing aids, regular follow up appointments, and routine hearing evaluations. Hearing care requires more than just fitting hearing aids. You will see the most benefit with regular visits to your hearing care provider, and we welcome opportunities to share our experiences and expertise with our clients. So, we encourage you to make us a part of your health care routine.
Alissa Horneland, BC-HIS
Board Certified in Hearing Instrument Sciences
Registered Hearing Aid Practitioner