Fortunately, for many people, hearing aids can provide the sound stimulation needed for the brain to restore the normal organisation of connections to its “sound centre” so it can more readily react to the sounds that it had been missing and cognitively process them.
Researchers says un-addressed hearing loss not only affects the listener’s ability to “hear” the sound accurately, but it also affects higher-level cognitive function. Specifically, it interferes with the listener’s ability to accurately process the auditory information and make sense of it.
In one study, Wingfield and his co-investigators found that older adults with mild-to-moderate hearing loss performed poorer on cognitive tests than those of the same age who had good hearing. The sharpness of an individual’s hearing has cascading consequences for various aspects of cognitive function. Even if you have just a mild hearing loss that is not being treated, cognitive load increases significantly.One has to put in so much effort just to perceive and understand what is being said that you divert resources away from storing what you have heard into your memory. As people move through middle age and their later years, researchers suggest, it is reasonable for to get hearing tested annually. If there is a hearing loss, it is best to take it seriously and treat it.
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