Access to hearing aids could help fight dementia, says doctor
Physician Frank Lin says treating hearing loss could help fight cognitive decline as he estimates 36% of dementia risk linked to hearing impairment
The Guardian News
Sunday 14 February 2016
Hearing loss contributes to dementia and mental decline, according to new medical research by a doctor who plans to begin the first clinical trial to study whether hearing aids could prevent or mitigate brain decline.
On Sunday physician Frank Lin described his research at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) in Washington DC.
“I’m asking how can our peripheral functions, namely hearing, affect our central functions – our brain,” he asked. “Unfortunately this question is completely unknown. This trial has never been done.”
Lin said the prevalence of hearing loss doubles for every decade of life, and that its high frequency has led physicians to dismiss it too often. “The vast majority of dementias in late life are multifactorial,” he said, “but the role of hearing loss has just not been studied.”