Hearing Loss and Dementia Linked

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Major study finds untreated hearing loss linked to dementia

Although the reason for the link is as yet unclear, a recent Johns Hopkins and National Institute on Aging study shows that seniors with hearing loss are significantly more likely to develop dementia over time than those with normal hearing. Researchers say these findings “could lead to new ways to combat dementia, a condition that affects millions of people worldwide and carries heavy societal burdens.”

Further, they suggest a common pathology may underlie the two conditions, or that the strain of “decoding sound” over the years puts undue strain on the brain leaving them more vulnerable to dementia. Other speculation includes the social isolation that often results from hearing loss as a factor that could exacerbate dementia and other cognitive disorders.  “Whatever the cause,” the school reports, “their finding may offer a starting point for interventions — even as simple as hearing aids — that could delay or prevent dementia by improving patients’ hearing.”

Source: http://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/news/media/releases/hearing_loss_and_dementia_linked_in_study

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