THE CONSEQUENCES OF UNTREATED HEARING LOSS
For many years, audiologists have understood the importance of treating sensorineural hearing loss with hearing aids or amplification. We've known that auditory stimulation for the hard of hearing can positively effect communication. But not until recently has the research around this topic been so impactful. We would like to share some comments from a few researchers who have dedicated a great deal of their career focusing on the link between hearing loss, cognition and functionality.
"There appears to be a significant relationship between peripheral hearing and cognition related to measures of cognition that assessed processing speed, executive function, or memory, as well as global cognitive status."
Ear Hear. 2015 Jan 13. [Epub ahead of print]
Peripheral Hearing and Cognition: Evidence From the Staying Keen in Later Life (SKILL) Study.
Bush AL1, Lister JJ, Lin FR, Betz J, Edwards JD.
"Hearing impairment is independently associated with poorer objective physical functioning in older adults."
Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci. 2014 Dec 3. pii: glu207. [Epub ahead of print]
Association of Hearing Impairment with Declines in Physical Functioning and the Risk of Disability in Older Adults.
Chen DS1, Betz J2, Yaffe K3, Ayonayon HN3, Kritchevsky S4, Martin KR5, Harris TB6, Purchase-Helzner E7, Satterfield S8, Xue QL9, Pratt S10, Simonsick EM11, Lin FR12; for the Health ABC study
"Hearing loss in older adults is associated with increased mortality, independent of demographics and cardiovascular risk factors. Further research is necessary to understand the basis of this association and whether these pathways might be amenable to hearing rehabilitation."
J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci. 2015 Jan;70(1):85-90. doi: 10.1093/gerona/glu094. Epub 2014 Jul 14.Association of hearing impairment and mortality in older adults.
Genther DJ1, Betz J2, Pratt S3, Kritchevsky SB4, Martin KR5, Harris TB6, Helzner E7, Satterfield S8, Xue QL9, Yaffe K10, Simonsick EM11, Lin FR12; Health ABC Study
About 20% of adults in the United States report some degree of difficulty with their hearing. People with hearing loss delay hearing impairment treatment because they are unaware of the fact that receiving early hearing treatment has the potential to literally transform their lives.
Communication is essential for engaging and participating in life.
...you can't begin to understand what you don't hear in the first place.