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The Connection Between Hearing and Maintaining Cognitive Function

By Nicole Anzalone

You don’t know what you don’t hear!

Research is teaching us the importance of giving our brains access to sound. It is common knowledge that decreased awareness of our environment and surroundings can be dangerous to our well-being. 

Based on current studies, hearing aids serve to maintain our cognitive function, balance, and safety, both physiologically and functionally. Untreated hearing loss can put us at risk of impairing our abilities to recognize and understand sounds and speech if we deprive ourselves of hearing for too long. This is true of any degree of hearing impairment including mild hearing loss. The amount of risk may also depend on the person’s genetics, duration of hearing loss, noise exposure, and the extent of damage to the ears and auditory nerves. And it is important to note that it is not always necessarily age-related. 

Hidden Hearing Loss

Some interesting recent studies show that 12% – 29% of adults with normal hearing report a perceived hearing deficit and may have difficulties processing sounds or speech in noise. If you perceive strain in understanding speech, you should ask your audiologist if they can perform a speech-in-noise test so that they can potentially uncover a hidden hearing problem. 

At Syracuse Hearing Solutions, we provide extensive diagnostic hearing testing and offer many solutions. Our providers can help you understand all your hearing options so you can choose the right solution for you.