Hearing Aids Could Help Reduce the Risk of Dementia

With the approach of Hearing Awareness Week, which begins on 25 February in Australia, hearing loss is brought to the forefront of many people’s minds once again.

There are many facets of hearing loss, and Katie Rahman, Audiometrist and owner of Hear Clear Australia in Dural, would like to draw attention to one that’s perhaps lesser known – how untreated hearing loss can affect long-term health.

“Many people don’t realise what an impact hearing loss can have on their overall health,” Katie Rahman says. “I believe that Australians should be considering hearing care as a vital part of their healthcare.”

Untreated hearing loss can put such a huge load on the brain in challenging environments that it can have adverse effects on long-term health, such as stress and mental fatigue. Hearing loss can lead to disengagement in conversation and interaction, which can result in social withdrawal, isolation and depression, and has even been linked with the acceleration of cognitive decline. Hearing loss was recently reported as the number one modifiable risk factor contributing to dementia in a study authored by the Lancet commissions on Dementia Prevention, Intervention, and Care*.

“When you struggle to hear what is happening, during a noisy family dinner or out for a coffee with friends, you not only get extremely tired trying to keep up, but many also tend to simply stop going out or socialising altogether. The good news is that wearing hearing aids could help,” Ms Rahman says. “One particular hearing aid is especially helpful in social situations. The Oticon Opn™ allows the wearer to hear in 360 degrees, helping them to cope with multiple speakers and switch focus whenever they want.”

Oticon Opn has been proven to increase understanding by 30 per cent, compared to Oticon’s previous generation of hearing aid technology, with wearers also experiencing 20 per cent less listening effort when trying to understand speech**. This enables the wearer to get back into the activities they had been avoiding because of their hearing loss.

“The Oticon Opn rechargeable hearing aids are available now from my clinic in Dural,” says Katie Rahman. “I’m offering a complimentary hearing aid charger for anyone who purchases the Oticon Opn miniRITE hearing aids between now and 31 of March. Simply call me on 02 9651 7379 to make an appointment.”

* Livingstone et al, 2017
** Le Goff et al, 2016