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Researchers Identify Hearing Aids Could Reduce the Dementia Risk


Having the ability to listen is a requirement for Pastor Sam Martz’s 61 years as a minister.

“I have people that I know that can’t hear well, and they drop out of a conversation. Well, as a minister, I can’t do that,” he said.

According to a research, Martz took part in a trial known as Achieve that shown hearing aids may slow cognitive decline in older persons at high risk of dementia. In the past, people might have thought, “Ah, hearing loss,” said Dr. Frank Lin, professor at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and the co-author of the study. It truly doesn’t matter. Why bother then? I believe the Achieve trial has demonstrated unequivocally that it matters. It substantially alters everything.

Nearly 1,000 persons with untreated hearing loss between the ages of 70 and 84 were the subject of the ground-breaking investigation. Researchers discovered that those with elevated risk factors for dementia, such as diabetes, hypertension, and living alone, saw a 48% slower rate of cognitive deterioration in the group using hearing aids during a three-year period.

For those who weren’t at high risk, there was no real change.

“When we saw a 50% reduction, we were sort of blown away and surprised,” Lin said.

Hearing loss has negative health impacts beyond its links to dementia, including a higher risk of falls, depression, and social isolation.

“We have two children, seven grandchildren and six great-grandchildren. Two on the way,” Martz said. “I have a future and I want to hear what my family says.”

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