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

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

Cognitive screening

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 Hyannis 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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    Patient Care Coordinator Required to Join Winning Team

    Duncan Hearing Healthcare is in search of a Patient Care Coordinator to join our amazing team in Fall River, Massachusetts. It’s an opportunity to be part of a nationally respected team of passionate people who have built a stellar reputation as the most caring, trustworthy, and experienced hearing care experts in Massachusetts.

    We’re now seeking someone that wants to join our work family, show us the commitment that we’ll show them and be part of shaping our future, as one of our patient care coordinators.

    To join our team, we care much more about you, your personality, and your career ambitions. From our experience, a great patient care coordinator cares more about people than anything else, they feel a duty to help others, and they’re often willing to go far beyond normal expectations to delight their patients.

    If this is how your co-workers and friends would describe you, we’d like to meet you:

    • Positive attitude, always a pleasure to be around, great sense of humor
    • Friendly, warm, a people person – and comes across the very first time you meet someone, even on the telephone
    • Patient, compassionate, helpful especially with older people. Even temperament, calm, always pleasant, unflappable. Has a knack for being able to turn a frown into a smile
    • Committed, dedicated, a great teammate, pitches in without being asked, puts team accomplishments ahead of individual accomplishments
    • Accurate, detailed, gets things right, double checks their own work, makes very few mistakes
    • Owns it: accepts responsibility, credits others for successes and accepts responsibility for failures. Always finds a constructive way to solve a problem
    • Coachable, doesn’t get defensive, accepts feedback with a positive attitude. Always looking for ways to grow and improve
    • Reliable, dependable, doesn’t just arrive on time: often comes in a little early to make sure they’re prepared for the day; willing to stay late when there’s work that needs to be done

    These statements also describe the people you’ll be working with in our office. It’s the kind of culture we’ve developed, and we’re absolutely committed to maintaining that culture.

    The person we hire has to be a great fit, and we’re prepared to wait until the perfect match comes along.

    This isn’t just a job: it’s a commitment to a team, serving a real purpose, helping people stay connected with their loved ones and enjoy life.

    If that appeals to you, and the above description made you say “Hey! That’s me!”, then we’d love to talk. We want to see your resume, so send that along! We are so excited to find the right fit for this position!
    Job Type: Full-time, 9-5, M-F, Competitive base salary (depending on experience) plus Commissions/Bonuses, Benefits including 401k available, paid holidays off, PTO included

    Experience required in the following areas:

    • Excellent customer service experience is essential!
    • Insurance verification experience is beneficial