Cognitive screening

How Can Cognitive Screening Address the Link Between Hearing Loss and Cognitive Decline?

06/07/2022 | Hearing Health, Hearing Loss, Patient Resources

We now have years of data proving the links between severe hearing loss and cognitive decline. We know that if left untreated, there is a significant chance that those who live with untreated hearing loss will develop cognitive issues.

These issues can include depression, dementia, or even Alzheimer’s disease. Losing control of your brain functions is a devastating diagnosis, and we want to do everything we can to prevent this.

In a recent article written by Medical News Today, they stated that more severe hearing loss has a higher probability of developing serious cognitive issues as well. Those with mild hearing loss have a 30% chance of experiencing cognitive decline, while severe hearing loss patients have a 54% chance.

Our best chance of preventing this is with early detection and proper treatments. Audiologists have been researching this topic for a long time, and this is still the best course of action.

With a cognitive screening, we can help residents in Fall River, Dartmouth, and Centerville keep their hearing healthy and stave off cognitive decline.

If you’ve never heard about it before, here’s how it can help.

Audiology and Brain Function

Hearing loss can be caused by so many different things that we as audiologists need to have knowledge of many other medical conditions.

Conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, eye impairment, or medication side effects can cause hearing loss. Hearing loss can also be caused by a lack of exercise, poor sleeping habits, or a poor diet.

Staying on top of any changes in your hearing will help us spot any adverse developments to treat them early. This is part of our service to you and your overall health.

We use cognitive screening to aid us in identifying any underlying issues that may be creeping up.

Cognitive Screening and What it Tests for

Approved by the FDA, cognitive screening tests your brain’s cognitive function from multiple points of view.

We use Cognivue, an advanced piece of machine used to perform the cognitive screening.

Cognivue assesses a person’s cognitive function during a quick, non-invasive, and comprehensive appointment.

Cognivue evaluates these cognitive areas of the brain:

  • Memory – Letter and word memory
  • Visuospatial – Motor skills, visual acuity
  • Delayed Recall – Shape and motion memory
  • Naming/Language – Letter and word perception
  • Abstraction – Being able to think about and follow abstract thoughts
  • Executive Function/Attention – Shapes and motor perception
Cognitive Health Starts with better Hearing

How Does Cognivue Work?

This quick and easy test only takes 15 mins to complete, and the best part is that it’s self-administered. You can take your time and relax, knowing that no one is looking over your shoulder.

It starts with an introductory video that will explain how to complete the test. This gives you a chance to practice the types of tests you’ll be completing.

Once you’re ready, the test begins and lasts about 10 mins. This is not a test with a keyboard or a list of right and wrong answers. There’s simply a wheel that you turn to select the picture you think makes the most sense to what is asked.

Once complete, another video will instruct you on your next steps and how to get the results.

That’s it. This simple procedure helps us determine the timeline of your hearing and cognitive status. We can discuss your options in detail and find the perfect solution to your specific condition with this information.

Here’s How Cognitive Screening Helps

Cognitive screening looks beyond just your hearing. It considers many medical functions that you may take for granted right now. It can also show us a side of you that would better explain what we currently know about your hearing.

Your health never stops changing so routine checkups are encouraged. Here’s why we are such big fans of this process.

    • Understand the scope of your hearing loss better because we can see all aspects that might be affecting it.
    • Administer further testing for anything we find and possibly refer you for treatment for other aspects of your health.
    • The screening is private and completed only by you. Your comfort and relaxation are essential for this test.
    • Early screening can detect signs of cognitive decline that you and everyone around you might not have noticed yet.
    • An annual cognitive assessment gives us an excellent view of your cognitive abilities. It allows us to monitor for any changes so we can adjust your hearing treatment to match them.

Ready for a Cognitive Screening?

The truth is everyone should be ready for a cognitive screening. Even if you suspect nothing is wrong, knowing what your tests look like when you’re healthy could help us get you back to that point in the future should anything start to falter.

You can book an appointment right here for yourself or even a loved one. Lead by example in your family and start a healthy trend by protecting everyone’s cognitive function.

We care about your hearing and overall health at Duncan Hearing Healthcare, and we’re here anytime you need us.

Give us a call at one of our three locations so we can get you on the right track and avoid any issues later in life. We look forward to helping you.

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Nancy Duncan, Au.D.

Dr. Nancy Duncan graduated from Somerset High, Somerset, MA in 1991 and received her B.S. in communication disorders and psychology from Worcester State College. Her master of science in audiology was awarded at the University of Arkansas in 1997, after which she worked for several private audiology practices in Arkansas, Rhode Island, and Massachusetts. Returning to the area in 2003, Dr. Duncan founded Duncan Hearing Healthcare, allowing her to apply her passion to her community through rehabilitative audiology and individual patient care. She earned her clinical doctorate in audiology degree from the Pennsylvania College of Optometry (now Salus University) in 2005. Her passion for her family and community is an integral part of what drives her to provide trustworthy, professional hearing healthcare to her patients.

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