YOUR LIFE YOUR HEALTH

Listen up! The health consequences of untreated hearing loss

Jun 13, 2024, 4:26 PM | Updated: 6:14 pm

MURRAY – The concerts, the parades, the fireworks – summer can be loud. So, taking care of your ears is key.

“A lot of noise exposure is going to eventually cause those little hair cells in our ears to not work the way they’re supposed to,” said Dr. Aubrey Passey, an audiologist an audiologist at Intermountain Cottonwood Audiology on the TOSH campus.

Around 600,000 people in Utah have hearing loss, and many may not realize it until they’re tested.

Not only can hearing loss affect how we communicate, but studies show a correlation between hearing loss and cognitive decline, especially in older adults.

“We kind of start to isolate. When we can’t engage with our community, life gets really hard,” Passey said.

Those with severe hearing loss are five times more likely to develop dementia than those without hearing problems, according to researchers from Johns Hopkins. Hearing loss was also found to be connected to balance issues and depression.

A 2023 study published in The Lancet reported that hearing aids play a big role in slowing cognitive decline in high-risk adults, but Passey said more research needs to be done on the link between the two.

If you think something is off with you or a loved one, talk to your doctor.

“If you notice a change in hearing – especially if it’s sudden – that needs to be treated as soon as possible,” Passey said.

Those with known hearing problems should get checked at least once a year. If you haven’t had your hearing checked before, Passey said it’s never too late to start. A simple hearing test involves a patient wearing headphones or earplugs in a sound booth while an audiologist plays various tones or beeps, and the patient pushes a button when they hear them.

A man taking a hearing test with an audiologist.

(FILE) A man taking a hearing test with an audiologist. (KSL TV)

Other ways to take care of your ears?

  • Value your quiet time.
  • Watch your phone volume.
  • Wear earplugs in loud environments.

“If you’re in a place where you need to yell to be heard, you need to be wearing hearing protection,” Passey said.

How waving down a stranger changed the life of a vet with hearing loss

KSL 5 TV Live

Your Life Your Health

...

Emma Benson

Heading to the lake? Don’t forget these water safety tips

Summer means fun in the water. But as you're out recreating, remember – accidents can happen in an instant.

2 days ago

"Way to Wellness" is a CDC-approved diabetes prevention program through Intermountain Health. The y...

Emma Benson

Intermountain program helping patients find their ‘Way to Wellness’

'Way to Wellness' is a CDC-approved diabetes prevention program through Intermountain Health. "It helps them to actually become more independent in their health," Melanie Holden, a registered dietitian nutritionist at Intermountain Health, said.

10 days ago

It's a fun way to celebrate Independence Day, but experts are reminding us: if not 
 handled proper...

Emma Benson

Fireworks safety tips for Fourth of July

It's a fun way to celebrate Independence Day, but experts are reminding us: if not handled properly, fireworks can be dangerous.

18 days ago

The new comprehensive cancer center at Intermountain McKay-Dee Hospital in Ogden....

Emma Benson

New Intermountain cancer center brings care to northern Utah patients

When it comes to treating cancer, having access to state-of-the-art specialized care near you can make all the difference.

24 days ago

Tom Nehring practicing his punches against a punching bag with another boxer....

Emma Benson and Michael Houck, KSL TV

‘This is medicine for me’: A Utah man is battling Parkinson’s with boxing

An interactive class is helping those effected by Parkinson’s disease by keeping them active with boxing.

1 month ago

Kenneth Applegate was diagnosed with high blood pressure. (Courtesy: Kenneth Applegate)...

Emma Benson

Utah dad’s journey from hypertension to health

At age 25, Applegate was diagnosed with high blood pressure. At first, he didn't think it was a big deal, until things became more serious.

1 month ago

Sponsored Articles

young male technician is repairing a printer at office...

Les Olson

Unraveling the dilemma between leasing and buying office technology

Carefully weigh these pros and cons to make an informed decision that best suits your business growth and day-to-day operation. 

A kitchen in a modern farmhouse....

Lighting Design

A room-by-room lighting guide for your home

Bookmark this room-by-room lighting guide whenever you decide to upgrade your lighting or style a new home.

Photo courtesy of Artists of Ballet West...

Ballet West

The rising demand for ballet tickets: why they’re harder to get

Ballet West’s box office is experiencing demand they’ve never seen before, leaving many interested patrons unable to secure tickets they want.

Electrician repairing ceiling fan with lamps indoors...

Lighting Design

Stay cool this summer with ceiling fans

When used correctly, ceiling fans help circulate cool and warm air. They can also help you save on utilities.

Side view at diverse group of children sitting in row at school classroom and using laptops...

PC Laptops

5 internet safety tips for kids

Read these tips about internet safety for kids so that your children can use this tool for learning and discovery in positive ways.

Women hold card for scanning key card to access Photocopier Security system concept...

Les Olson

Why printer security should be top of mind for your business

Connected printers have vulnerable endpoints that are an easy target for cyber thieves. Protect your business with these tips.

Listen up! The health consequences of untreated hearing loss