An important new study out of France reveals something striking: wearing hearing aids may actually help slow cognitive decline among seniors. This study, reported at the blog site of AARP, seems to show a linkage between better hearing and a healthier brain. Click here to access this fascinating article.
The study, recently published in The Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, reportedly followed nearly 3,700 adults age 65 or older for 25 years. A little less than one third (about 1,300 participants) reported moderate to major hearing loss during that period. According to the research, while the majority of subjects experienced some level of cognitive decline, those with hearing loss who did not wear hearing aids declined at a faster rate. For those who used hearing aids, the rate of decline matched that of subjects with normal hearing.
In other words, the hearing aids seem to slow the rate of cognitive decline. What was going on?
After further analysis, according to the AARP article, the researchers concluded that “hearing loss causes depression and social isolation, which then affect brain health.” The report further stated that, because they help restore communication abilities, “hearing aids may help improve mood, increase social interactions, and enable participation in cognitively stimulating abilities and consequently could slow cognitive decline.”
As with many medical studies, these results are preliminary. Still, the evidence seems to suggest that preserving our hearing as we age is one way to slow the rate of cognitive decline that can adversely affect our quality of life. Since all our clients want to avoid becoming a burden to their loved ones, it’s imperative that we do all we can to preserve our health and our mental faculties.
In the words of the AARP article, “Consider the French study a wake-up call…This study is a strong indication that correcting hearing loss is an important component in keeping your brain in good working order.”
How can you help ensure that you’re getting the best advice for healthy aging? We strongly advise our clients that their personal medical team should always include a geriatrician – a physician who specializes in issues related to aging. This professional can advise you in making health care decisions designed to optimize all aspects of your physical and emotional health – just as we will work with you to optimize all facets of your comprehensive retirement plan. As a first step, why not attend one of our free LifePlanning Seminars? Click on the Upcoming Events tab for locations and dates. We’ll look forward to seeing you there!
Link to blog.aarp.org
(originally reported at http://blog.aarp.org)