Hearing Aids May Prevent Dementia

0 reactions
Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

Hearing Aids and Dementia

Hearing loss has been found to contribute to nearly 8% of dementia cases. A new study published in The Lancet found that using hearing aids greatly reduces the risk of developing dementia in people with hearing loss.

If you have hearing loss, using hearing aids may lower the risk of developing dementia by over 40%. This causes the risk of developing dementia to be equal to the risk in people without hearing loss.

The research presented by this study supports the idea that using hearing aids could prevent the development of dementia. In a CNN report, one of the study’s authors, Dongshan Zhu, stated, “Our study provides the best evidence to date to suggest that hearing aids could be a minimally invasive, cost-effective treatment to mitigate the potential impact of hearing loss on dementia.”

In this study, researchers used data of over 437,000 people from the UK Biobank. The UK Biobank is a database of health information from approximately 500,000 people from the United Kingdom. The researchers took other factors into account including depression, isolation, loneliness, and substance use. These factors did not change their finding that untreated hearing loss contributes to dementia.

In individuals over 65, the risk of developing hearing loss is 30%, and in people over 85, the risk of developing hearing jumps to as high as 70-90%. The researchers estimated that only 13% of people with hearing loss use hearing aids.

This lack of hearing aid use is troubling. Theories state that sensory deprivation due to hearing loss may shrink brain volume. This can lead to cognitive decline. When compared to people without hearing loss, those with hearing loss experience more loneliness, social isolation, and depression.
People still seem embarrassed when using hearing aids, but there is no reason to be. Hearing aids significantly improve the quality of life and limit many social and health problems.

In the United States, steps are being taken to improve access to hearing aids. In August 2022, the US Food and Drug Administration made hearing aids available over the counter without prescription. In a CNN report, Dr. Karina De Sousa, an audiology and speech-language pathology researcher, stated, “One thing to remember is that OTC hearing aids are not a one-size-fits-all option. If you do not meet the specified criteria for wearing an OTC hearing aid, I would recommend seeking the help of a qualified hearing professional.”

The importance of wearing hearing aids has never been clearer. If you experience hearing loss, treating it as early as possible will limit your risk of dementia and allow you to have a better quality of life as you age.

Dementia Videos

View our video resources for more information about dementia and related topics.

Why hormones are superheroes when it comes to dementia

Sleep Deeply and Well to Prevent Alzheimer’s & Dementia

How To Supercharge Your Brain & Avoid Cognitive Decline

Uncover +40 ways to Reverse Alzheimer's, Delay Dementia, and Improve Cognitive Function and the Reverse Alzheimer's 3.0 Summit!


Join the discussion

or to comment
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Daniel Chantigian
Daniel Chantigian, MS
Learn more

When it comes to complex scientific or medical topics, Daniel can successfully communicate with any audience via writing, social media, lecturing, and one-on-one discussions. Over the past decade, he developed these skills as a researcher at the University of Minnesota and the Mayo Clinic, as a lecturer at the University...

Join the discussion

or to comment
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

We would love to hear your thoughts. Join the discussion belowx
drtalks logo

SMS number

Login to DrTalks using your phone number

✓ Valid
Didn't receive the SMS code? Resend

Create an Account


Signup with email

Already have an account? Log In

DrTalks comes with great perks that guests to our site don’t have access to. Sign up for FREE


Become a member

DrTalks comes with great perks that guests to our site don’t have access to. Sign up for FREE

"*" indicates required fields


Already have an account? Log In



Login to get access to DrTalks wide selection of expert videos, your summit or video purchases.