Woman with hearing loss doing dishes because she forgot to turn the dishwasher on.

Chris has been slightly forgetful recently. For two months in a row, she missed her doctor’s appointment and needs to reschedule. And before she went to bed she even overlooked running the dishwasher (I guess this morning she will have to handwash her coffee cup). Lately, she’s been allowing things slip through the cracks. Chris has been feeling mentally fatigued and drained all the time but, curiously, she doesn’t feel forgetful.

Only after that feeling is sneaking up on you, will you begin to recognize it. But in spite of how forgetful you might feel, the problem isn’t actually about memory. Your hearing is the actual issue. And that means you can significantly improve your memory by using one little device.

How to Improve Your Overall Cognitive Function And Memory

So, step one to improving your memory, to get everyone’s name right at your next meeting or to make sure you arrange that day off for your eye exam, is to get your hearing checked. If you have hearing loss a hearing test will let you know how severe your impairment is.

Chris hesitates, though, because she hasn’t noted any signs or symptoms of hearing loss. She doesn’t really have a problem hearing in a noisy room. And she’s never had a hard time listening to any of her team members at work.

But she may have some amount of hearing loss even though she hasn’t noticed any symptoms yet. As a matter of fact, memory loss is commonly one of the very first detectable signs of hearing loss. And strain on the brain is the underlying cause. It works like this:

  • Your hearing starts to diminish, maybe so gradually you don’t notice.
  • Your ears detect a lack of sound, however slight.
  • Your brain starts working a little harder to interpret and boost the sounds you are able to hear.
  • Everything feels normal, but it takes more effort from your brain to comprehend the sounds.

That kind of constant strain can be a real drag on your brain’s finite resources. So things like memory and cognitive function get pushed to the back.

Dementia And Hearing Loss

If you take memory loss to its most obvious extremes, you may end up dealing with something like dementia. And dementia and hearing loss do have a connection, though what the precise cause-effect relationship is, continues to be somewhat unknown. Still, there is a higher risk of cognitive decline in people who have neglected hearing loss, which can begin as memory loss and ultimately (over the years) turn into more extreme concerns.

Wearing Hearing Aids Will Help You Prevent Fatigue

That’s the reason why treating your hearing loss is necessary. Marked increase of cognitive function was observed in 97.3% of people with hearing loss who wore hearing aids for at least 18 months according to one study.

Similar benefits have been seen in several other studies. Hearing aids are really helpful. Your general cognitive function increases when your brain doesn’t have to struggle as hard to hear. Sure, a hearing aid isn’t an absolute cure, cognitive decline or memory problems can be a complicated mixture of causes and variables.

Memory Loss Can be The First Signal of Hearing Loss

This type of memory loss is almost always not permanent, it’s an indication of mental fatigue more than a fundamental change in how your brain operates. But if the underlying problems are not addressed, that could change.

So if you’re observing some memory loss, it can be an early sign of hearing loss. When you first observe those symptoms, you should make an appointment with your hearing professional. As soon as your fundamental hearing problems are dealt with, your memory should go back to normal.

And your hearing will probably improve as well. The decline in your hearing will be slowed dramatically by wearing hearing aids. These little devices, in a sense, will improve your general health not just your hearing.

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The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.