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

Lately, Chris has been somewhat forgetful. For the second month in a row, she forgot her doctor’s appointment and needs to reschedule. And before she went to bed she even overlooked running the dishwasher (looks like this morning she will have to handwash her coffee cup). Things have been getting lost lately. Chris has been feeling mentally exhausted and depleted 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. Frequently, though, the issue isn’t your memory, despite how forgetful you may appear. The real concern is your hearing. And that means you can substantially improve your memory by using one little device.

How to Improve Your General Cognitive Function And Memory

So, having a hearing exam is the first measure to enhance your memory so you will remember that dentist appointment and will remember everyone’s name in the next meeting. If you have hearing loss a hearing test will alert you to how bad your impairment is.

Chris hasn’t recognized any signs of hearing loss yet so she hesitates to schedule an appointment. She doesn’t really have an issue hearing in a crowded room. And when she’s working, she doesn’t have an issue hearing team members.

But she might have some degree of hearing loss even though she hasn’t detected any symptoms yet. Actually, one of the first signs of hearing impairment is memory loss. And it all has to do with brain strain. This is how it works:

  • Gradually and nearly imperceptibly, your hearing begins to diminish.
  • Your ears detect a lack of sound, however mild.
  • Your brain starts working a little bit harder to translate and boost the sounds you are able to hear.
  • You can’t detect any real difference but in order to make sense of sound your brain needs to work extra hard.

That amount of continuous strain can be really difficult on your brain’s limited resources. So you don’t have as much mental energy for things like, well, memory or for other cognitive functions.

Dementia And Hearing Loss

If you take loss of memory to its most logical extremes, you could end up looking at 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, people who have neglected hearing loss, over time, have a higher risk for experiencing cognitive decline, which can begin as memory loss and eventually (over the years) turn into more severe issues.

Hearing Aids And Fending Off Fatigue

That’s why dealing with your hearing loss is essential. According to one study, 97.3% of those with hearing loss who wore hearing aids for at least 18 months showed a marked stabilization or increase in their cognitive abilities.

Similar results have been observed in several other studies. Hearing aids really help. When your brain doesn’t need to work quite as hard, your overall cognitive function gets better. Memory loss and issues with cognitive function can have many intricate factors and hearing aids aren’t always a magic bullet.

Memory Loss Can be The First Signal of Hearing Loss

This kind of memory loss is mostly due to mental exhaustion and is usually not permanent. But that can change if the underlying concerns remain neglected.

So if you’re noticing some loss of memory, it can be an early warning of hearing loss. When you first begin to observe those symptoms, you should make an appointment with your hearing specialist. As soon as your underlying hearing issues are dealt with, your memory should return to normal.

And your hearing will most likely improve also. The decline in your hearing will be slowed substantially by wearing hearing aids. In a sense, your overall wellness, not just your memory, could be improved by these little devices.

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