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Hearing instruments could reduce dementia risk

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Hearing instruments could reduce dementia risk

Hearing instrument use has been associated with a 32 per cent lower prevalence of dementia, according to researchers at Johns Hopkins University. 

The study also found evidence that suggests that up to 40 per cent of dementia cases could be prevented if 12 risk factors, one of which is hearing loss, could be eliminated. 

As a result, the British and Irish Hearing Instrument Manufacturer’s Association (BIHIMA) and Alzheimer’s Research UK are encouraging people to book regular hearing tests and get hearing concerns checked earlier. 

To support people in understanding their risk, Alzheimer’s Research UK has launched a new digital tool called Think Brain Health Check-In which encourages people to address factors that could reduce the risk of dementia, including sleep, diet and getting their hearing checked. 

It is “essential that any perceived barriers to getting a hearing check are minimised”, according to Dr Susan Mitchell, head of policy at Alzheimer’s Research UK. The charity, she adds, “believes that integrating a hearing check within the NHS, freely available for over 40s in England is one potential way to do this”.

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