McDonald Hearing Services - Grand Rapids, MI

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

As of late, Chris has been somewhat forgetful. She forgot her doctor’s appointment two months in a row (now she needs to reschedule again). And before she went to bed she even forgot to run the dishwasher (looks like this morning she will have to handwash her coffee cup). Lately, she’s been allowing things slip through the cracks. Chris has been feeling mentally exhausted and depleted all the time but, strangely, she doesn’t feel forgetful.

It can be challenging to put your finger on that feeling until it’s sneaking up on you. Often, though, the issue isn’t your memory, in spite of how forgetful you may appear. Your hearing is the actual problem. And that means you can significantly improve your memory by using one small device.

How to Enhance Your Overall Cognitive Function And Memory

So, getting a hearing test is the first step to improve your memory so you will remember that dentist appointment and will remember everyone’s name at the next meeting. A standard hearing assessment will be able to determine if you have hearing loss and how severe any impairment might be.

Chris hesitates, though, because she hasn’t noted any symptoms or signs of hearing loss. She doesn’t really have a problem hearing in a crowded room. And she’s never had a tough time listening to any of her team members at work.

But she could have some level of hearing loss even though she hasn’t detected any symptoms yet. As a matter of fact, memory loss is frequently one of the very first noticeable symptoms of hearing loss. And it all has to do with brain strain. It works like this:

  • Your hearing starts to fade, maybe so gradually you don’t realize.
  • Your ears notice a lack of sound, however slight.
  • Your brain starts working a little harder to decipher and amplify the sounds you are able to hear.
  • Everything feels 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 dragged down by that kind of burden. So things like memory and cognitive function take a back seat.

Hearing Loss And Dementia

When memory loss is extreme, the result might be dementia. And dementia and hearing loss do have a connection, though what the precise cause-effect relationship is, continues to be rather uncertain. Still, there is an increased risk of cognitive decline in people who have neglected hearing loss, which can begin as memory loss and ultimately (over the years) turn into more serious issues.

Wearing Hearing Aids Will Help You Avoid Fatigue

That’s the reason why treating your hearing loss is crucial. According to one study, 97.3% of those with hearing loss who wore hearing aids for at least 18 months showed a significant stabilization or improvement in their cognitive functions.

Similar results have been seen in several other studies. Hearing aids are really helpful. When your brain doesn’t need to work quite as hard, your overall cognitive function gets better. Memory loss and problems with cognitive function can have many intricate factors and hearing aids aren’t always a magic bullet.

Memory Loss Can be The First Signal of Hearing Loss

This form of memory loss is mostly because of mental fatigue and is normally not permanent. But that can change if the fundamental issues remain un-addressed.

Loss of memory, then, can be somewhat of an early warning system. When you first detect those symptoms, you should schedule an appointment with your hearing professional. Your memory will probably return to normal when your underlying hearing issues are addressed.

As an added benefit, your hearing health will most likely get better, as well. A hearing aid can help stop the decline in your hearing. In a sense, your overall wellness, not only your memory, could be enhanced by these little devices.

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