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When Cognition & Hearing Loss Collide

When Cognition & Hearing Loss Collide: When Cognition & Hearing Loss Collide
By Jennifer Bradley, Staff Writer
(Page 1 of 2)

If you find a loved one asking repetitive questions, becoming more confused and forgetful, you may assume they have dementia, but the cause could be hearing loss.

While it’s not “new” news, study results reported in the January 2013 Journal of the Medical Association Internal Medicine are confirming what many professionals have believed: that cognitive loss and hearing loss collide on a large scale.

The study, from the John Hopkins University School of Medicine, is the first of its kind and is viewing long-term brain function impacted by hearing loss. When the study began in 2001, the 1,984 participants (in the age range of 75 to 84) were in good health and had no cognitive impairment. Over a period of six years, hearing and brain cognition tests were administered. Study researchers determined that brain ability was in direct correlation to hearing loss. Those who did have hearing loss suffered more substantial cognitive impairment more than three years sooner than others with normal hearing levels.