Chris has been a bit forgetful as of late. For the second month in a row, she missed her doctor’s appointment and needs to reschedule. And before she went to bed she even forgot to run the dishwasher (looks like she’ll be handwashing her coffee cup this morning). Lately she’s been allowing things slip through the cracks. Strangely, Chris doesn’t actually feel forgetful…she just feels mentally drained and exhausted all the time.
It can be challenging to recognize that feeling until it’s sneaking up on you. Frequently, though, the issue isn’t your memory, in spite of how forgetful you may appear. Your hearing is the real problem. And that means there’s one little device, a hearing aid, that can assist you to considerably improve your memory.
How to Improve Your Memory And General Cognitive Function
So, step one to improving your memory, and getting everybody’s name right at your next meeting or to make sure you arrange that day off for your dentist appointment, is to get your hearing tested. A standard hearing screening will be able to determine if you have hearing loss and how bad any impairment may be.
Chris hasn’t noticed any signs of hearing loss yet so she hesitates to schedule an appointment. She doesn’t really have an issue hearing in a noisy room. And she’s never had a hard time listening to any of her team members at work.
But just because her symptoms aren’t apparent doesn’t mean that they don’t exist. In fact, memory loss is frequently one of the very first detectable signs of hearing loss. And strain on the brain is the base cause. It works like this:
- Your hearing begins to fade, perhaps so slowly you don’t realize.
- However slight, your ears begin to notice a lack of sound input.
- Your brain starts working a little harder to translate and boost the sounds you are able to hear.
- Everything feels normal, but it takes more effort from your brain to make sense of the sounds.
Your brain only has a limited amount of processing power which can really be dragged down by that type of burden. So you have less mental energy for things like, well, memory or for other cognitive functions.
Hearing Loss And Dementia
When loss of memory is extreme, the result could be dementia. And dementia and hearing loss do have a connection, though what the actual cause-effect relationship is, continues to be somewhat uncertain. Still, those with neglected hearing loss, over time, have a higher risk for having cognitive decline, which can start as memory loss and eventually (over the years) develop into more extreme problems.
Keeping Fatigue Under Control With Hearing Aids
That’s the reason why treating your hearing loss is essential. As stated in one study, 97.3% of people who suffer from hearing loss who wore hearing aids for at least 18 months showed a noticeable stabilization or improvement in their cognitive functions.
Similar benefits have been noted in various other studies. Hearing aids really help. When your brain doesn’t need to work quite as hard, your total cognitive function improves. Sure, a hearing aid isn’t an absolute cure, memory problems and cognitive decline can be a complicated mix of factors and elements.
Memory Loss Can be The First Sign of Hearing Loss
This kind of memory loss is commonly not permanent, it’s an indication of mental fatigue more than a fundamental change in the way your brain functions. But if the underlying concerns are not addressed, that can change.
So if you’re recognizing some memory loss, it can be an early warning of hearing loss. You should set up an appointment with your hearing specialist as soon as you recognize these symptoms. Your memory will likely return to normal when your fundamental hearing concerns are addressed.
And your hearing will probably improve also. The decline in your hearing will be slowed dramatically by wearing hearing aids. These little devices, in this way, will enhance your overall health not only your hearing.