Something like 28 million people could benefit from wearing hearing aids. Of course, when we discuss statistics like that, we usually mean that those 28 million individuals would hear the world a little better if they had some help (in the form of a specialized device). But there are also some other, rather unexpected health benefits that you can start to enjoy thanks to your hearing aids.
Your mental and physical health can, as it so happens, be helped by something as simple as using hearing aids. Everything from a risk of falling to depression can be slowed or even stopped by these gadgets. In more ways than one, your hearing aids can help you stay on your feet.
Mental Health Benefits of Hearing Aids
Modern medical research has firmly established a connection between hearing loss and cognitive decline. Mental illnesses like depression, cognitive decline, anxiety, and dementia, according to current thinking, can be triggered by hearing loss as a consequence of a mix of physical, mental and social factors.
So it’s not surprising that recent analyses has suggested that hearing aids might have considerable mental health benefits.
Reducing Your Chances of Dementia
As reported by one study, wearing your hearing aids can help reduce your chances of developing dementia by as much as 18%. And all you need to do to take advantage of this awesome benefit is remember to wear your hearing daily.
In other research, the arrival of dementia was slowed by as much as two years by wearing hearing aids. This is really inspiring and with more research done to replicate and clarify these figures, we can come a long way in the battle against cognitive decline and illness.
Depression And Anxiety Can be Decreased
Anxiety and depression are not symptoms that are exclusive to those who suffer from hearing loss. But there’s enough evidence to indicate that people with hearing loss are at increased risk of developing both anxiety and depression as time passes.
When you have hearing aids, you are likely to stay more mentally focused and socially engaged. If those were contributing factors to depression and anxiety, they can help.
You Won’t be as Lonely
While it may not seem as serious or imperative as dementia, loneliness can be a big issue for people with untreated hearing loss, social isolation often being the cause and adding fuel to the fire. That social isolation can cause considerable changes to your mood. So being able to stay social and connected with help from your hearing aid can be a big advantage.
To be sure, this ties together with your hearing aids’ ability to lower the risks of depression, for example. All of these health issues, to a certain degree, are in some manner connected.
The Physical Benefits of Hearing Aids
As your hearing impairment gets worse, there is some evidence that you could be at a higher risk of having a stroke. But that particular research is obviously in the preliminary stages. It’s a little easier to recognize the more pronounced physical benefit of hearing aids: you’ll fall less often.
This takes place for two reasons:
- 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. Fall detection is a built-in feature of many newer hearing aid designs. You can program emergency phone numbers into your phone which will automatically be called if you take a tumble.
- Situational awareness: This means you’ll be more capable of steering clear of obstacles that might cause a fall. If your pet, for instance, is zooming out to say hi, you will be able to hear them coming and will be prepared for them to be running under your feet.
Falling can have fairly substantial health impacts, especially as you get older. So your general health can be protected by reducing damage from falls or preventing them altogether.
Be Sure to Wear Your Hearing Aids
It’s worth noting that all of these benefits apply to those who have hearing conditions. If you have healthy hearing, then using a hearing aid will likely not reduce your risk of dementia, for instance.
But if you do suffer from hearing loss, the smartest thing you can do for your ears, and for overall health, is to use your hearing aids.