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  • Cameron Oglesby

Who’d have thought this could be a way to stave off dementia?

Updated: Nov 14, 2021

The Lancet Commission report on dementia named factors that could prevent the onset of dementia or delay its progression.

One of those – protecting your head from traumatic brain injury – is so obvious it’s (sorry, I couldn’t resist the pun) a no-brainer.

So, too, is a lifetime of learning, from childhood education through college, mentally demanding work, and mentally stimulating activities from crossword puzzles to playing music to travel to social contact to learning a second language.

Five more – physical activity, controlling your weight, managing blood pressure and diabetes, and limiting alcohol – are also good for your cardiovascular system, and there’s a link between dementia and your vascular system. (Two of them – stopping smoking and avoiding air pollution – may seem like a bit of a stretch, but both smoking and dirty air can put damaging air particulates into your vascular system.)

But one form of prevention seems to come straight out of left field, and that’s using a hearing aid.

Medical researchers write that “Hearing loss might result in cognitive decline through reduced cognitive stimulation,” and studies seem to bear this out.

One study, of 6,451 representative Americans averaging 59 years old, found that every 10-decibel (dB) hearing loss below clinical threshold decreased cognition, and that hearing impairments of more than 25 dB “were significantly related to lower cognition.”

In many other studies, older people who used hearing aids had much better immediate and delayed recall. “Hearing aid use was the largest factor protecting from decline,” one of those studies concluded.

The point here is not that everyone over 65 should rush out to get their hearing tested. It’s that when it comes to senior care, not everything is as simple and clear-cut as it may seem superficially.

That’s why a standard menu of ready-made, one-size-fits all “solutions” won’t do. And why our thorough three-part needs assessment goes below the surface. It involves not only the client, but also their spouse and their family – particularly family caregivers – and covers everything from health and meds to mobility and safety issues to cognitive and mental health to financial and legal questions. That way, it becomes the basis of a coordinated care management plan built on your specific, uniquely individual needs, and nothing else.

So please contact us to learn more about how our holistic approach can help you keep living your life on your terms.

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