How Hearing Loss Can Affect the Brain

Feb 1, 2014 by

HearFlorida’s audiologists recently heard about an alarming new study. You have always been told to protect your ears to help preserve hearing, but a new study shows that by protecting your hearing you may also be doing your brain a huge favor as well. Researchers from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania recently conducted a study on the effects of hearing loss on grey matter in the brain. The results were shocking and support protecting your hearing even more than before. Hearing loss was linked to actual grey matter or brain atrophy.

With any kind of chance in the senses, in this case hearing, the brain often has to adjust to this change.  With hearing loss, the brain loses part of its density in the auditory section. The study examined the relationship between hearing and brain function by first, measuring the brains response to complex sentences. Next, the brain volume in the auditory cortex was measured. People ages 60-77 that experienced some form of age related hearing loss were also tested to show if people with hearing loss had less of a response to the complex sentences. The results showed that those with hearing loss had less brain activity when listening to the complex sentences.

When thinking about hearing loss prevention, remember to protect your hearing means you will also be protecting the auditory part of your brain. Now there is an entirely new level of importance to protecting your hearing. HearFlorida is here to help; we carry a huge selection of Hearing Aids, including the new Starkey Xino!