How A Cognitive Screening Provides Personalized Treatment For Hearing Loss

by | Apr 21, 2022 | Hearing Aids, Hearing Loss, Patient Resources | 0 comments

We hear the results of new studies almost every month that prove that cognitive decline is connected to an untreated hearing loss, and the more severe the hearing loss, the higher the risk of cognitive decline.

Medical News Today gives these numbers for people with an untreated hearing loss:

  • Mild hearing loss: 30% risk
  • Severe hearing loss: 54% risk

The good news is that the sooner a person gets hearing treatment, the lower the risk, because being able to hear better slows down the degeneration. Auditory system brain cells spring back into action rather than stay unused.

A long-term French study showed how cases of disabilities, dementia, and depression among elderly men with a hearing loss kept increasing over the 25-year study while men who wore hearing aids or had no hearing loss saw little to no cognitive decline.

Our Aim Hearing & Audiology Services team wants to make sure that your health is always optimized, including your brain and hearing health, so with that in mind, we have found a way to assess your cognitive health every time you come in for a hearing check.

What A Cognitive Health Screening Achieves

Brain cells are fascinating. They can do so much to keep you healthy. But when the body’s health starts to degenerate, it affects the brain cells and affects your hearing.

When we check your brain health:

  1. We can often find health conditions early on that you might not yet be aware of, and we can refer you to the right medical specialist to catch it early. Conditions include diabetes, heart disease, the effects of toxic medications, or eye problems.
  2. We can also catch the effects of a poor diet, lack of exercise, or poor sleep patterns and suggest remedies to make sure your brain is getting everything it needs to function well.

All of this has the goal of helping us take care of your hearing health better. Because when your hearing treatment is great, your risk of cognitive decline is reduced by 17%.

We can check your cognitive health with cognitive screening.

What Is Cognitive Screening?

Cognitive screening is a screening procedure for cognitive function that has been developed and fine-tuned over the last 15 years and is approved by the FDA. It is done on a computerized screen.

Cognitive screening evaluates three cognitive domains of the brain: memory, visuospatial, and executive function. It also measures reaction time and speed processing to what is said or is happening.

We can check your:

  • motor skills,
  • shape and motor perception and memory,
  • letter and word perception and memory, and
  • your ability to think about and follow abstract thoughts.

With this tool, we can identify any decline and help manage it, and we can also make sure you are on the right hearing care plan.

What Happens At A Cognitive Screening?

A cognitive screening only takes about 15 minutes from start to finish. It’s self-administered, and the instructions in the introductory video are easy to follow.

You interact with what you see on a computerized screen by rolling and clicking on a “ball” on a keyboard, much like a voting machine mouse.

We read the results immediately after the test is done, and we let you know if any follow-up, change in hearing care plan, or medical referral is needed.

Where To Start

If you or a loved one wants to take the best first step in securing your best quality of life, book a cognitive screening with Aim Hearing and Audiology Services.

Even if it’s something you’d just like to make sure of, we recommend doing it for peace of mind. And once we get a baseline set of results, you can get a screening every year to make sure everything is okay.

Feel free to contact us with any questions about cognitive screening or any of our hearing care services. We’re here for you and your loved ones’ hearing needs.

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Dr. Shannon Frymark Au.D., CCC-A

Shannon Frymark, Au.D., CCC-A, audiologist, was raised in Greensboro, NC. She received her Bachelor of Science in Communication Disorders and Master of Arts degree in Audiology from the University of North Carolina Greensboro. She was awarded her doctorate in Audiology from the Pennsylvania College of Optometry: School of Audiology. While in undergraduate and graduate school, she worked at the Central School for the Deaf as a residential counselor. Dr. Frymark spent the first five years of her audiology career with Florida Hospital in central Florida.

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