Hearing Loss Treatment
Hearing Loss and Dementia: The Silent Connection
Scientists are finding more and more evidence that trouble with hearing makes it more likely to have signs of dementia, a condition marked by memory loss and trouble with thinking, problem-solving, and other mental tasks.
That doesn’t mean that people with hearing loss (about two-thirds of adults over 70) are guaranteed to have dementia -- simply that the odds are higher.
What’s the Link?
Scientists have found that a person’s chances for mental decline seem to go up the worse their hearing problems are. In one study, mild, moderate, and severe hearing loss made the odds of dementia 2, 3, and 5 times higher over the following 10-plus years. Studies of older adults who had lost some hearing found that they had mental decline 30%-40% faster, on average. Looked at another way, they had the same mental decline in 7.7 years, on average, as someone with normal hearing showed in 10.9 years.
- People with hearing loss tend to feel isolated, since it’s hard to join in conversations or be social with others when you can’t hear. Some research has shown a link between feeling lonely or isolated and dementia. So hearing loss may make mental decline happen faster than it would otherwise.
- Your brain has to work harder to process sound if you don’t hear well. That may take away resources that it could use for other important activities.
- If your ears can no longer pick up on as many sounds, your hearing nerves will send fewer signals to your brain. As a result, the brain declines.
Although there is a link between Dementia and Hearing loss, Not everyone will be effected the same way, some may not be effected at all. There will continue to be ongoing studies and information throughout the years.
Can Tinnitus be cured?
If you consistently hear ringing, buzzing, or hissing sounds in your ears, you may suffer from tinnitus. Tinnitus is a hearing condition which is experienced by roughly 15% of the general public, according to the American Tinnitus Association, marked by persistent and often distracting sounds.
Tinnitus can take many forms, from being a mild inconvenience to a serious disruption that can make it difficult to function in day-to-day life. In some cases, tinnitus may be accompanied by hearing loss, adding to the challenges faced by those with tinnitus.
Can tinnitus be cured? Unfortunately, at this time, there is no cure. However, there is still hope for people with tinnitus, and multiple options for tinnitus treatment
What Causes Tinnitus?
Fundamentally, tinnitus is caused by damage to the cochlea, a sensitive organ in the inner ear. The cochlea is directly responsible for taking in exterior sounds and converting them into electrical impulses for the brain.
The most common cause of tinnitus is especially loud noises. People who work with or around heavy machinery tend to be most at risk, but tinnitus can potentially develop from a single extra-loud event - even a rock concert! Other things which can damage the cochlea include ear infections, a variety of medications, and TMJ disorders. On top of that, psychological factors such as stress and fatigue can aggravate tinnitus. It is a very complicated condition.
Basically, the reason that the answer to "can tinnitus be cured?" is "not yet" is that we do not currently have the science to repair damaged cochlea’s, and researchers do not entirely understand the factors which cause tinnitus to persist.
What Tinnitus Treatment Options are Available?
There are tinnitus treatment options, depending on your situation. Because psychology plays a role in tinnitus, counseling can often be effective. Additionally, if there is actual hearing loss accompanying the tinnitus, hearing aids can be of significant help.
One of the most promising new tinnitus treatments is sound therapy. On-ear devices can deliver sounds specifically "tuned" to counteract the sounds produced by tinnitus. Some believe that sound therapy can even be used to re-train the brain, so it ceases to hear tinnitus sounds. These devices can also be paired with hearing aids for two-in-one treatment.
Thousand Islands Hearing Is Passionate About Tinnitus Treatments
If you suffer from tinnitus, we want to help! Please schedule an appointment to evaluate your case.