Sensory Loss and Dementia

Sensory Loss and Dementia

Every now and then, I get a sharp reminder of just how important our mission is.
That happened this week when I came across a report from the Alzheimer’s Association.
We’ve known for some time that hearing loss increases the risk of dementia in older adults. But that’s not the whole story.
As the association reports, a recent study by the Department of Epidemiology at the University of Washington in Seattle looked at what happens when older people lose both vision and hearing.

This condition is called Dual Sensory Impairment, or DSI.

While 33% of people over the age of 70 suffer from hearing impairment, and 18% have impaired vision, there’s a significant number of folks who suffer from both. And for the first time, UW has studied how that affects people’s lives.

As I’m sure you can imagine, it’s not a happy story. Older adults with DSI had a significantly higher risk of developing dementia, usually in the form of Alzheimer’s Disease.

Here at LSH we have had a few clients who have come to us needing eye surgery, and then have let us know that they also need help with their hearing. I’m happy to say that we’ve been able to help with both.

If you’d like to read about this in more depth, you can find the report here.


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