Hearing aids could benefit about 28 million people. Naturally, when we discuss data like that, we generally mean that those 28 million people would hear their surroundings a little more clearly if they had some help (like hearing aids). But your hearing aids will also help you take advantage of some other health benefits.
It turns out that something as simple as using your hearing aids could help your physical and mental health. Everything from depression to a risk of falling can be delayed or even stopped by these gadgets. Your hearing aids can literally keep you on your feet.
Mental Health Benefits of Hearing Aids
Modern medical studies have solidly established a link between hearing loss and cognitive decline. Mental illnesses including dementia, cognitive decline, anxiety, and depression, according to current thinking, can be induced by hearing loss as a consequence of a combination of mental, physical and social factors.
So it’s not surprising that recent analyses has suggested that hearing aids might have considerable mental health benefits.
Decreasing Your Chances of Dementia
As reported by one study, wearing your hearing aids can help lower your risk of developing dementia by as much as 18%. That’s a wonderful advantage when the only thing you need to do is remember to wear your hearing aids every day.
In other studies, the onset of dementia was slowed by as much as two years by using hearing aids. Further research needs to be done to help explain and replicate these findings, but it’s certainly encouraging.
Decrease Depression And Anxiety
Many individuals suffer from anxiety and depression even if they don’t have hearing loss. But there’s plenty of evidence to suggest that those with hearing loss are at increased risk of developing both depression and anxiety as time passes.
Wearing your hearing aids can help you stay socially involved and mentally connected. If those factors were contributing to anxiety and depression, they can help.
You’ll Feel Less Lonely
While dementia might sound much more extreme, solitude can be a serious issue for individuals with neglected hearing loss, caused by and exacerbating a sense of social isolation. Your general mood can be significantly impacted by social isolation. So it can be a huge advantage if your hearing aids can help you continue to be socially involved.
And this is a good reason why, for example, your hearing aid can help counter conditions such as depression. All of these health issues, to some extent, are in some way linked.
Hearing Aids And Physical Benefits
There is some data which indicates that as hearing loss symptoms become more obvious, your risk of stroke goes up. But these studies are in preliminary stages. The most obvious (and perceptible) physical benefit of hearing aids is a little more straightforward: you’ll fall less often.
There are a couple of explanations for this:
- Fall detection: Many times, it’s getting back up after a fall that is the real danger, not the fall itself. Fall detection is a built-in feature of many newer hearing aid models. You can program emergency phone numbers into your phone which will be automatically called if you take a tumble.
- Situational awareness: This means you’ll be more capable of steering clear of obstacles that could cause a fall.
As you get older falling down can have a devastating impact on your health. So preventing falls (or reducing the damage from falls) can be a substantial benefit that ripples throughout your overall health.
Make Sure You Wear Your Hearing Aids
These advantages, it’s worth pointing out, pertain to individuals who have hearing impairment. If your hearing is healthy, then wearing a hearing aid will probably not reduce your risk of dementia, for instance.
But using your hearing aids, if you do have hearing loss, is the best thing you can do for general health.