Hearing Loss and Incident Dementia: Link Between & Treatment

Written by the Nano Hearing Aids Team
Reviewed for Accuracy by Nano Hearing Aids.

Hearing Loss and Incident Dementia: Link Between & Treatment

Hearing loss brings several health problems to the patient with incident dementia being one of them. Here we will discuss the relationship between hearing loss and incident dementia, and the possible treatment options.

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Hearing loss imbalances the brain function of an individual. Therefore, some portion of the brain cannot work properly, and the patient will face difficulties with memory and performing day-to-day tasks.

Relation Between Incident Dementia and Hearing Loss

Certain incidents or health conditions can trigger incident dementia. Stroke, hearing loss, and general anesthesia are just a few of the prominent reasons.

The relationship between hearing loss and incident dementia is not clear yet. More research is needed to be done in this area. 

However, many researchers theorize that when a person impairs their hearing ability and keeps it untreated, certain portions of the brain are utilized to understand speech better. This impacts patients’ memories severely.

As a result, the patients may experience the following symptoms:

  • Frequent mood changes
  • Loss of memory
  • Struggle to find the correct words during conversation
  • Not able to concentrate for long periods of time
  • Getting confused on day-to-day tasks
  • Forgetting about the time and date

These symptoms may initially be mild. According to study, the symptoms may worsen with time and cause severe complications for the individuals.

Some may consider these symptoms as a result of natural aging. However, with time, the condition will only get worse. 

Also, research indicates that incident dementia patients who have hearing loss will have difficulty conversing. It will further separate them from others. As a result, patients frequently become anxious and exhibit depressed symptoms.

Possible Treatment for Hearing loss Induced Incident Dementia

Incident dementia is often less severe than prevalent dementia. With appropriate treatments in the possible early moment, the symptoms can be contained, and patients can lead healthy lives.

Hearing Aids

Hearing aids are the primary treatment for treating hearing loss. Hearing loss patients can get back to their usual life with the help of hearing aids. It allows them to hear sounds properly and perform their usual task.

With the help of hearing aids, hearing loss patients can take part in active conversation and avoid severe mental health conditions. Additionally, hearing aids help in reducing extra stress from the brain. Therefore, brain damage can be avoided, and brain health is kept intact.

Hearing loss can damage the language center of the brain. As a result, most dementia patients struggle to remember appropriate words. With the help of hearing aid devices, this problem can be avoided.

Surgical Procedures

In some cases, hearing loss can be caused due to problems within the ear. Tumors, infections, eardrums or bone abnormality are some of the prominent examples.

In such cases, removing or reconstructing the affected area by a surgical procedure can reverse the hearing loss. Consult your doctor immediately when you experience hearing loss. The doctor can give you a proper diagnosis of your condition and suggest appropriate treatment options.

A surgical procedure may also be necessary if persistent fluids gather in the ear. In this case, the fluids will need to be removed.

Cochlear Implant

If you suffer from severe hearing loss that hearing aids cannot solve, cochlear implants are your best option. You will need to implant this device surgically to hear sounds better.

If you get cochlear implants to resolve your hearing loss, you may need to learn how to hear with this device. Cochlear implants send sound signals directly to your brain rather than through your ear. You may need to take a certain time to get used to this device.

Things You Need To Do Before Seeing a Doctor

If you experience any dementia or hearing loss symptoms, consult your doctor immediately. You can prepare a list to help your doctor and have an overall better and more efficient appointment. 

Here are a few things you can prepare:

  • Write down your symptoms and mention how long you have had them. Ask help from your loved ones to get more information. They may have noticed some symptoms that were not obvious to you.
  • Prepare your medical history, like previous infections or surgeries. Also, sometimes a hearing loss can be inherited so gather your family medical history as well.
  • Note down your job history, or anywhere you can develop ear infections or be exposed to excessive loud noise.
  • Take someone along with you to help you remember all the information, or be prepared to take detailed notes.
  • If you have any additional questions for the doctor, write them as well.

The Bottom Line with Hearing Loss and Incident Dementia

Both hearing loss and incident dementia can bring severe consequences to a person’s life; however, both conditions can be managed if treated early. 

Most hearing loss patients back away from getting treatment as hearing aids can be expensive. However, Nano hearing aids offer you affordable yet high-quality hearing aids to help you with your hearing loss and dementia problem.

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