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The Crucial Brain Health Reason Why You Should Get Your Hearing Tested




According to the Royal National Institute for Deaf People (RNID), one in five adults in the UK are deaf, have hearing loss or tinnitus.

Broken down into numbers, this means that 12 million adults in the UK are deaf, have hearing loss or tinnitus. That is roughly 10.1 million people in England, 1 million people in Scotland, 610,000 people in Wales and 320,000 people in Northern Ireland

However, according to new data from eargym, one in three adults would feel apprehensive or embarrassed about wearing hearing aids in public. Not only that but it appears that as we age, hearing aid stigma seems to worsen.

This is very concerning when you consider that hearing loss doesn’t just impact our ears.

 

The health impacts of hearing loss

On their website, Hearing Dogs for Deaf People said: “When people come to us for help, one of the most significant problems they can face is isolation and loneliness. Hearing loss detaches people from interactions with others.

“It makes understanding those who mumble or turn away during conversations impossible. The human world is built around interaction and community support, and deafness can take all of this away.”

The charity also pointed out that hearing loss can lead to people feeling anxious about not being aware of essential information being delivered via such as roadside traffic, public announcements in airports and, worryingly, fire alarms.

Additionally, not having hearing loss treated or feeling too ashamed to wear hearing aids can lead to cognitive decline.

According to the RNID, hearing loss is one of the biggest modifiable risk factors when it comes to developing dementia.

They said: “Hearing aids can significantly increase people’s ability to take part in everyday life and communicate with friends and family, improving people’s wellbeing. This potentially reduces the risk of depression and social isolation and slows cognitive decline.

“Research is starting to suggest that hearing aids might slow cognitive decline for people who are at high risk of dementia (such as people with cardiovascular disease). ”

 

“We need to normalise hearing checks and hearing aids as par for the course”

Speaking on this research,  Amanda Philpott, 56, hearing health expert, hearing aid user and CEO at eargym, commented: “If we’re to end hearing aid stigma, we need to normalise hearing checks and hearing aids as par for the course when it comes to our healthcare, just as eye tests and eye glasses are considered routine.

She added that as a hearing aid user herself, she’s passionate about destigmatising hearing aids saying: ” It’s critical if we are to help the millions of people with hearing loss reap the social and cognitive benefits of healthy hearing.”

Philpott believes that we need to rethink our approach to hearing aids. She believes that they are seen as a symbol of frailty but said: “For me, wearing hearing aids represents a refusal to let hearing loss rule my life.”

Hearing tests can be booked at your local opticians.

 

Source: Sarah-Louise Kelly, Yahoo News UK

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