The National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders reports that around 15 percent of adults have some hearing loss. If you have symptoms, then it is likely that there is some hearing loss and getting the test done will help you find a solution. What you might not realize, though, is getting screened for hearing loss is a lifesaver because any change in your hearing may indicate something much bigger is affecting your health.
Hearing Loss and Dementia
The World Health Association (WHO) reports that by 2050, there may be over 100 million individuals globally suffering from some form of dementia. At the root of this increase is age-related hearing loss.
Researchers from Johns Hopkins Medical Center discovered that people with mild hearing loss at around a 25 decimal decline – increase their risk of developing Alzheimer’s. For every 10 decibels that your hearing drops, the risk increases by 20 percent. A hearing test can predict your risk level and help create a solution like a hearing aid to reduce the stress and lower your risk.
Hearing Loss and Heart Disease
The inner ear has a very intricate and sensitive network of blood vessels. Even the tiniest change in blood flow, like a poorly functioning major artery, can show up first as hearing loss. If the hearing test indicates a slight decrease, but there doesn’t appear to be any problem with the mechanisms of your ears, the next place to look at blood flow.
Hearing Loss and Skin Cancer
A hearing test is an evaluation that goes beyond just the audiometer screening, too. A medical professional will do a physical exam of your ears, too. This location is a difficult to see and where a suspect mole can be easily missed. During the exam of your ears, the physician will look at the skin for signs of lesions or potential cancer growth.
Hearing Loss and Depression
Even minor hearing loss can bring with it stress and depression. You may not know why you’re struggling to keep up or perhaps you think bad hearing is just part of getting older. You may be afraid of what a hearing test will tell you, too. What if you are going deaf and there is nothing you can do about it? That fear is unwarranted for most. Hearing loss is usually treatable medically or by using a hearing assistance device. Either way, you have more to lose than gain by avoiding this simple test.