Why Hearing Aids Can Improve Your Memory

Woman with hearing loss doing dishes because she forgot to turn the dishwasher on.

Chris has been somewhat forgetful recently. For two months in a row, she forgot her doctor’s appointment and has to reschedule. And before she went to bed she even forgot to run the dishwasher (I guess this morning she will have to handwash her coffee cup). Things have been getting lost lately. Chris has been feeling mentally fatigued and drained all the time but, curiously, she doesn’t feel forgetful.

Only after that feeling is sneaking up on you, will you start to recognize it. But in spite of how forgetful you might feel, the issue isn’t really about memory. The real concern is your hearing. And that means there’s one little device, a hearing aid, that can assist you to substantially improve your memory.

How to Improve Your All-around Cognitive Function And Memory

So, getting a hearing exam is the first measure to enhance your memory so you will not forget that dentist appointment and will remember everyone’s name in the next meeting. A typical hearing examination will be able to find out if you have hearing loss and how bad any impairment might be.

Chris hesitates, though, because she hasn’t observed any signs or symptoms of hearing loss. She doesn’t really have difficulty hearing in a noisy room. And when she’s working, she doesn’t have an issue hearing team members.

But just because her symptoms aren’t apparent doesn’t mean that they aren’t present. In fact, memory loss is often one of the very first detectable signs of hearing loss. And it all involves brain strain. This is how it works:

  • Slowly and almost imperceptibly, your hearing starts to diminish.
  • Your ears detect a lack of sound, however slight.
  • The sounds that you can hear, need to be amplified and translated which makes your brain work extra hard.
  • Everything seems normal, but it takes more effort from your brain to comprehend the sounds.

Your brain only has so much processing power which can really be stressed by that sort of strain. So things such as memory and cognitive function take a back seat.

Hearing Loss And Dementia

When loss of memory is extreme, the result could be dementia. And there is a link between dementia and hearing loss, though there are numerous other factors at work and the cause and effect relationship continues to be fairly uncertain. Still, there is an elevated danger of cognitive decline in those who have neglected hearing loss, which can begin as memory loss and ultimately (over the years) become more severe problems.

Keeping Fatigue at Bay With Hearing Aids

That’s why dealing with your hearing loss is indispensable. Significant increase in cognitive function was observed in 97.3% of individuals with hearing loss who used hearing aids for at least 18 months according to one study.

Similar results have been seen in various other studies. It’s definitely helpful to wear hearing aids. Your general cognitive function increases when your brain doesn’t need to work as hard to hear. Sure, a hearing aid isn’t an absolute cure, memory problems and cognitive decline can be a complex mix of factors and variables.

The First Sign of Hearing Loss is Often Memory Loss

This kind of memory loss is almost always not permanent, it’s an indication of mental fatigue more than an underlying change in how your brain operates. But if the underlying problems are not addressed, that could change.

So if you’re noticing some loss of memory, it can be an early sign of hearing loss. You should make an appointment with your hearing specialist as soon as you detect these symptoms. Your memory will likely go back to normal when your fundamental hearing issues are addressed.

As an added bonus, your hearing health will likely get better, as well. A hearing aid can help stem the decline in your hearing. These little devices, in this way, will improve your general health not only your hearing.

The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.