Improve Your Cognitive Health Which
* Consultation, Training, Special Hearing Aids, and On-Going Support
Friday, December 2, 2022
Tony Napoletano has been improving the “Cognitive Health” of his clients which lessens dementia for years in Delaware and Chester Counties.
Let’s be honest, no one wants their brain health (Cognitive Health) to decline, but your cognitive health does decline if you can’t hear properly. Your brain needs to expend additional resources and assist your ears when you have a hearing loss. This reduces the resources your brain has to perform its other functions and you suffer as your brain health declines.
Restoring your hearing restores sound to you. When this happens, you are no longer in a fog. The familiar sounds and voices stimulate your brain as the synapses and neurons are now firing in your brains. A smile on their faces of your loved ones is one of the nicest outcomes you will experience when you get your hearing loss addressed.
Tony Napoletano expressed his satisfaction with the performance of selected hearing aids: “We can now offer a solution to restore hearing which sends signals to stimulate your brain.”
A 2020 study from The Lancet Commission 1 on dementia prevention discovered that “mid-life hearing loss” is the highest of 12 modifiable risk factors linked to dementia. These factors account for about 40% of the overall risk of dementia. Aging and family history are more significant (but not modifiable) factors. Hearing loss might either add to the cognitive load or lead to social disengagement or depression, all of which could contribute to accelerated cognitive decline.
A 2018 study by Amieva in The Journals of Gerontology 2 showed that untreated hearing loss contributes to cognitive and physical decline. Having an untreated hearing loss, meaning not using hearing aids…
- …increases the risk of developing dementia by 21%
- …increases the risk of becoming dependent on others by 28%
- …increases the risk for men of suffering from depression by 43%
According to Amieva: Proper fitting with hearing aids eliminates this increased risk.
 Gill Livngston et.al. (2020) Dementia prevention, intervention, and care: 2020 report of the Lancet Commission, The Lancet, Vol 396, August 8, 2020
 Helene Amieva et. al. (2018): Death, Depression, Disability, and Dementia Associated with self-reported Hearing Problems: A 25-Years Study: in: The Journals of Gerontology, Series A, January 2018
My family had been telling me for a long time that I needed to have my hearing checked. I ignored them until my son told me that there is a proven connection between untreated hearing loss and early onset of dementia in older adults. Tony responded to my inquiry right away and, during the pandemic, came to my house with his equipment and tested me at home. Needless to say I do need aids and now find that going without them is akin to not wearing my glasses. Bottom line, I would rather see AND hear.
Cognitive Health and Dementia. Your brain is the biggest reason why you should get your hearing loss addressed. Many of our clients are surprised to learn this, but in fact, your ears don’t hear. They are only a piping system. Your brain hears. The outside of your ear is called the Pinna. This is the part that looks like radar, captures the sound, and guides it down the ear canal. The eardrum (AKA the Tympanic Membrane) is one inch from the outside of your ear. When sound occurs, the eardrum moves, causing three small bones on the backside of the eardrum to move. These three bones (malleus, incus, and stapes) are the smallest bones in your body. The 3rd bone, the stapes, is one-eighth of an inch, which is like the size of a piece of rice. The stapes touches 20,000 hair cells in your cochlea. The cochlea is a fluid-filled structure in your inner ear about the size of an eraser on a number two pencil. It’s located below the mastoid bone behind your ear. Sound causes vibrations in the cochlea, which causes chemicals to rush into cells causing an electrical signal. This electrical signal travels on the auditory nerve to the brain, which converts it into something we understand. Most hearing loss comes from those 20,000 little hairs wearing down and not working properly. This is called “sensorineural hearing loss”. Hearing aids help to address this loss, so that the proper signals are sent to your brain. When you have to strain to hear, your brain uses a lot of resources which would normally be used for other functions and this decreases your cognitive health. When you get hearing aids to help you hear, then the brain is free to perform all the functions of healthy cognition.
If anyone in your family suffers from dementia, addressing hearing loss is even more important for your quality of life. Based on a study from the Lancet Commission, family genetics and age account for 60% of dementia cases. Obviously, family genetics and age, you can’t change. Of the remaining 40% of dementia cases, there are 12 modifiable items which can impact the levels of dementia. Based on this study, hearing loss is the biggest modifiable action one can take to have an impact on their dementia. That means if you have hearing loss and a family history of dementia, addressing your hearing loss can put all the odds in your favor against dementia. When you get a hearing aid to address hearing loss, it helps to send all the proper electrical signals to your brain. Proper and regular stimulation to the brain gives a person the best chance to be engaged with others. Hearing your family members and friends when they speak to you can really restore the quality of life for most people including dementia patients.