American Hearing & Audiology - Conway, AR

Woman helping her father improve his hearing and cognitive health with hearing aids.

Susan is living the active lifestyle she always thought she would after retirement. She travels a lot and at 68 she’s been to over a dozen countries and is planning many more trips. On some days she can be found exploring a hiking trail with her grandkids, on others she will be volunteering at a local soup kitchen, and sometimes you will see her out enjoying the lake.

Susan always has something new to do or see. But in the back of her mind, Susan is concerned that cognitive decline or dementia could change all that.

Her mother displayed first signs of dementia when she was around Susan’s age. Susan watched her mother, who she had always loved and respected, struggle more and more with daily tasks over a 15 year period. She’s becoming forgetful. There finally came a time when she frequently couldn’t identify Susan anymore.

Having seen what her mother went through, Susan has always tried to remain healthy, eating a well-balanced diet and getting plenty of exercise. But she isn’t sure that will be enough. Is there anything else she can do that’s been shown to delay cognitive decline and dementia?

Thankfully, there are things that can be done to prevent cognitive decline. Three of them are listed here.

1. Exercise Everyday

Susan discovered that she’s already on the right track. She does try to get the suggested amount of exercise every day.

People who do modest exercise every day have a decreased risk of cognitive decline according to many studies. They’ve also had a positive effect on people who are already encountering symptoms of mental decline.

Here are numerous reasons why researchers think consistent exercise can stave off cognitive decline.

  1. Exercise slows the deterioration of the nervous system that typically occurs as we get older. The brain needs these nerves to communicate with the body, process memories, and consider how to do things. Researchers think that because exercise slows this breakdown, it also slows cognitive decline.
  2. Neuroprtection factors might be enhanced with exercise. There are mechanisms within your body that protect some cells from damage. Scientists believe that a person who exercises may produce more of these protectors.
  3. Exercise decreases the danger of cardiovascular disease. Blood carries oxygen and nutrients to cells in the brain. If cardiovascular disease stops this blood flow, cells die. By keeping the heart and vessels healthy, exercise may be able to delay dementia.

2. Treat Vision Concerns

An 18-year study of 2000 individuals with cataracts, showed that having cataract surgery halved the rate of cognitive decline in the group who had them removed.

Maintaining healthy eyesight is important for mental health in general even though this research only concentrated on one common cause of eyesight loss.

Losing eyesight at an older age can cause a person to disengage from their circle of friends and stop doing things they enjoy. Further studies have investigated connections between social separation and worsening dementia.

If you have cataracts, don’t just disregard them. If you can take steps to sharpen your vision, you’ll also be safeguarding yourself against the advancement of dementia.

3. Get Hearing Aids

You may be heading towards cognitive decline if you have neglected hearing loss. A hearing aid was given to 2000 participants by the same researchers that carried out the cataract research. They tested the advancement of cognitive decline in the same manner.

They got even more remarkable results. The people who received the hearing aids saw their dementia advancement rates decrease by 75%. So the dementia symptoms they were already experiencing simply stopped.

This has some likely reasons.

The social aspect is the first thing. People tend to go into isolation when they have untreated hearing loss because interacting with friends at restaurants and clubs becomes a challenge.

Additionally, a person progressively forgets how to hear when they begin to lose their hearing. The degeneration gradually impacts other parts of the brain the longer the person waits to get their hearing aids.

Researchers have, in fact, used an MRI to compare the brains of people with untreated hearing loss to people who use a hearing aid. The brain actually shrinks in people with untreated hearing loss.

Clearly, your mental capability and memory are going to begin to falter under these conditions.

Ward off dementia by wearing your hearing aids if you have them. If you have hearing loss and are reluctant to get hearing aids, it’s time to make an appointment with us. Learn how you can hear better with today’s technological advancements in hearing aids.

Call Today to Set Up an Appointment



References

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3258000/
https://www.telegraph.co.uk/science/2018/10/11/hearing-aids-slow-dementia-75-new-study-finds/
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6581941/
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5764000/
https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/health/healthy_aging/healthy_body/the-hidden-risks-of-hearing-loss
https://www.helpingmehear.com/hearing-aids-facts/

The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.
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