About 28 million people could benefit from wearing hearing aids. Of course, when we discuss data like that, we generally mean that those 28 million individuals would hear their surroundings a little better if they had some help (in the form of a specialized device). But your hearing aids can also help you enjoy some other health advantages.
As it turns out, something as straight forward as using your hearing aids could help your mental and physical health. These tiny gadgets can help counter (or delay) everything from depression to fall-induced-injury. In more ways than one, your hearing aids can help you stay on your feet.
Mental Health Benefits of Hearing Aids
The connection between untreated hearing loss and cognitive decline is fairly well established by modern medical research. Mental illnesses like depression, cognitive decline, anxiety, and dementia, in line with current thinking, can be induced by hearing loss as a consequence of a mix of physical, mental and social factors.
So the mental health benefits of hearing aids shouldn’t be very striking.
Decreasing Your Chances of Dementia
As reported by one study, wearing your hearing aids can help lower your chances of developing dementia by up to 18%. And all you have to do to take advantage of this awesome advantage is remember to wear your hearing every day.
In other research, the onset of dementia was slowed by as much as two years by using hearing aids. Further research needs to be carried out to help explain and duplicate these results, but it’s definitely encouraging.
Decrease Anxiety And Depression
Many people suffer from depression and anxiety even if they don’t have hearing loss. But individuals who suffer from hearing loss have been shown to have a higher risk of depression and anxiety over time.
When you wear hearing aids, you tend to stay more mentally focused and engaged socially. If those factors were contributing to anxiety and depression, they can help.
You’ll be Less Lonely
While it may not seem as serious or imperative as dementia, for individuals with neglected hearing loss, loneliness can be a genuine problem, caused by and exacerbating a sense of social solitude. Your general mood can be considerably influenced by social separation. So being able to stay social and connected with help from your hearing aid can be a big advantage.
To be certain, this is connected to your hearing aids’ ability to reduce the risks of depression, for example. To a certain degree, all of these health problems connect in some manner.
Hearing Aids And Physical Advantages
As your hearing impairment gets worse, there is some research that shows that you could be at a higher risk of stroke. But this research is in preliminary stages. It’s a little easier to recognize the more pronounced physical advantage of hearing aids: you won’t fall as much.
There are a couple of reasons for this:
- Fall detection: Sometimes, it’s not the fall that’s hazardous. Instead, it’s that you can’t get back up that can be a real problem. Many new designs of hearing aids come with fall detection as a standard feature. You can program emergency phone numbers into your phone which will automatically be called if you take a tumble.
- Situational awareness:
Falling can have very significant health effects, especially as you get older. So avoiding falls (or decreasing the damage from falls) can be a substantial advantage that ripples throughout your general health.
Be Sure to Wear Your Hearing Aids
These advantages, it’s worth pointing out, apply to people who suffer from hearing impairment. If you have healthy hearing, then wearing a hearing aid will most likely not decrease your risk of dementia, for example.
But using your hearing aids, if you do have hearing loss, is the best thing you can do for overall health.