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Hearing Aids Can Help Reduce Risks of Dementia - Malaya Business Insight

Wednesday, Aug 31, 2022 at 3:00 PM


PEOPLE’S ability to hear or quality of hearing can be affected by several factors regardless of their age. The World Health Organization (WHO) believes that these factors can be experienced across various periods in an individual’s life span, but they can be most vulnerable during critical periods.

Hearing loss may manifest during critical life periods such as pre-natal (due to genetics, whether hereditary or non-hereditary), perinatal (from lack of oxygen at the time of birth, low birth weight for example), childhood and adolescence (resulting from chronic ear infections, or viral infections like meningitis), then adulthood (through chronic diseases, smoking, trauma to the ear or head, or exposure to loud sounds) and older age (age-related This emphasizes that providing hearing aids and other assistive devices to anyone suspected of experiencing hearing loss is important. In adults, the use of hearing aids may lessen the decline of a person’s cognitive ability – the skills involved in perception, memory, learning, understanding, awareness, judgement, and language – , a situation that experts call “cognitive decline” or dementia, especially among older people.

A landmark study was released in 2015, “Self-Reported Hearing Loss, Hearing Aids, and Cognitive Decline in Elderly Adults: A 25-Year Study” (Amieva et al, 2015), done on close to 4,000 participants 65 years old and above. The study sought to investigate the association between hearing loss, the use of hearing aids and cognitive decline among the elderly.

Upon follow up in 2015 (or after the 25-year period), researchers found that cognitive decline increased among those who reported having hearing loss but did not use hearing aids, compared to those who used them, where cognitive decline was significantly less. They concluded that addressing one’s hearing loss by use of hearing aids may slow cognitive decline by reducing communication difficulties and improving mood and social interactions.

Thus, with better hearing through the use of hearing aids, the brain is constantly stimulated so the brain regions that process speech and sound won’t deteriorate, making it easier for the person toremain mentally and socially active, and slowing the effects of cognitive decline associated with ageing.

Designed to help the brain to work in the optimal way so it consequently requires less cognitive effort to hear, understand, and participate, the new Oticon More™ hearing aids are proven to deliver 30 percent more sound to the brain, increase speech understanding by 15 percent, and dramatically reduce sustained listening effort, compared to Oticon’s previous premium hearing instruments *. With the use of Oticon More hearing aids and its patented BrainHearing™ technologies, the brain is supported by providing better access to a clear and full sound scene that put meaningful sounds in the foreground rather than the background.This provides the hearing instrument user with the most complete, most natural and most successful listening experience possible.

Oticon has been putting the brain first for almost 20 years, wherein Brain Hearing reflects its audiological focus of supporting the way the brain makes sense of the sound it receives from the ears. Oticon holds the belief that “Hearing Care is Health Care”: helping people with hearing loss to maintain good communication in social environments is not only a matter of hearing health but also a matter of general well-being.

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