Hearing aids could benefit about 28 million people. Of course, when we discuss statistics like that, we usually mean that those 28 million individuals would hear their surroundings a little bit better if they had some help (like hearing aids). But there are also certain other, relatively unexpected health benefits that you can start to take advantage of thanks to your hearing aids.
Your mental and physical health can, as it turns out, be helped by something as easy as using hearing aids. Everything from depression to a risk of falling can be delayed or even prevented by these gadgets. In more ways than one, your hearing aids can help keep you on your feet.
Hearing Aids And Mental Health Benefits
The link between untreated hearing loss and cognitive decline is pretty well demonstrated by modern medical studies. Currently, the thinking is that, for a combination of mental, social, and physical factors, hearing loss can trigger an escalated risk of mental illness, such as cognitive decline, anxiety, depression, and dementia.
So it’s not surprising that recent analyses has suggested that hearing aids might have substantial mental health benefits.
Dementia Risks Reduced
Your risk of dementia can be decreased, based on one study, by nearly 20%. That’s a wonderful advantage when all you need to do is remember to wear your hearing aids on a daily basis.
Other research has suggested that wearing your hearing aids on a regular basis can slow the onset of dementia by up to a couple of years. This is very encouraging and with more research done to replicate and clarify these numbers, we can come a long way in the fight against mental decline and illness.
Anxiety And Depression Can be Reduced
Depression and anxiety aren’t symptoms that are unique to individuals who have hearing loss. But there is enough evidence to indicate that those with hearing loss are at increased risk of developing both anxiety and depression as time passes.
When you have hearing aids, you tend to stay more tuned in mentally and engaged socially. Hearing aids can be particularly helpful if those factors are contributing to depression and anxiety.
You’ll Feel Less Lonely
While it may not sound as dire or important as dementia, for individuals who have neglected hearing loss, isolation can be a real issue, caused by and exacerbating a sense of social solitude. Your overall mood can be significantly influenced by social separation. So it can be an enormous advantage if your hearing aids can help you continue to be socially involved.
And this is an excellent reason why, for instance, your hearing aid can help protect against conditions like depression. All of these health concerns, to some extent, are in some way connected.
Hearing Aids And Physical Advantages
As your hearing impairment worsens, there is some evidence that you might be at a higher risk of stroke. But that specific research is obviously in the preliminary stages. The most obvious (and perceptible) physical advantage of hearing aids is a little more straightforward: you won’t fall as often.
There are a couple of reasons for this:
- Fall detection: In some cases, it’s not the fall that’s hazardous. Instead, it’s your inability to get back up that produces possible danger. Many new models of hearing aids have fall detection built in. 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 avoiding obstacles that could cause a fall.
As you get older falling down can have a devastating effect on your health. So avoiding falls (or reducing the damage from falls) can be a major advantage that ripples throughout your general health.
Wear Your Hearing Aids Everyday
These benefits, it’s worth pointing out, pertain to people who suffer from hearing impairment. Hearing aids won’t, for instance, help someone with healthy hearing avoid falling.
But if you do have hearing loss, the smartest thing you can do for your hearing, and for overall health, is to use your hearing aids.