Boost Your Cognitive Skills by Nurturing Your Eyesight and Hearing
We all love to hear the sounds and see the sights of the world around us. Taking good care of these senses can actually help boost our cognitive functions, according to collaborative studies published by the University of Michigan in America as well as the University of Manchester in the U.K.
The study was a joint one, conducted in both the universities mentioned above, and explored the effect of hearing aids as well as cataract surgery on cognitive skills. They were able to find a strong correlation that suggests that those who wear hearing aids reduced the rate of cognitive deterioration by a whopping 75%!
Having a cataract surgery also seemed to have similar positive effects, since it reduces the chances of having cognitive deterioration by 50%. This study examined 2000 participants every alternative year for a period of 18 years. Their cognitive skills were measured using memory tests prior to obtaining hearing aids and after hearing aids were procured.
When it comes to hearing loss and its effects on cognitive deterioration, the researchers were able to pin point two major factors that were deemed to be the causes of cognitive decline.
The first factor was social isolation which results from hearing loss. Having a hearing problem really can be an isolating experience since no one quite understands how hard it is except the person who has it. This experience can make a person reluctant to socialize out of fear of embarrassment or being stigmatized due to their having hearing loss.
People with hearing loss often withdraw from society and refrain from attending social gatherings. Over time, this increases their sense of loneliness and can lead to depression. Due to the lack of social contact and no communication, cognitive deterioration increases.
The other factor that leads to hampered cognitive skills is the presence of cognitive overload. Even though we hear using our ears, it is the brain that deciphers the sound signals into recognizable noises. With hearing loss, the brain needs to work much harder to make sense of the limited sound signals while attempting to fill in the gaps. This can lead to frustration, irritability, and eventually, cognitive decline as the brain tries to do too much.
It is up to us to take care of our general health so that we can make the most out of our years to come. Taking good care of our eyes as well as our ears can help us keep problems like dementia at bay.