- Reviewed by Toni Golen, MD, Editor in Chief, Harvard Women's Health Watch; Editorial Advisory Board Member, Harvard Health Publishing; Contributor
Hearing loss can contribute to cognitive decline and may increase the risk of dementia. But seeing an audiologist and regularly using hearing aids was linked to slower cognitive decline in people already at higher risk of developing cognitive impairment, a new study suggests.
The analysis, published online July 17, 2023, by The Lancet, involved about 1,000 people ages 70 to 84 (54% women). All had hearing loss, but some were also participating in a long-term study of cardiovascular health and were deemed at higher risk of developing memory and thinking problems. Participants were randomly split into two groups: half received counseling on preventing chronic disease, while the others got hearing aids and treatment for hearing loss from an audiologist. Researchers tracked the groups for three years, rating their cognitive abilities at the end of the study.
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About the Author
Maureen Salamon, Executive Editor, Harvard Women's Health Watch
About the Reviewer
Toni Golen, MD, Editor in Chief, Harvard Women's Health Watch; Editorial Advisory Board Member, Harvard Health Publishing; Contributor
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