Simple precaution could slash your risk of dementia by almost 50%, says research

Alzheimers Research UK explain 'what is dementia?'

Worryingly, the number of dementia cases is set to triple worldwide to more than 150 million by 2050. 

With no cure in sight, research continues to uncover ways and preventative measures that could keep the mind sharp.

A new study, published in the Lancet, adds to this effort.

The research team found that hearing aids could decrease the chances of cognitive decline by almost 50 percent in people at risk of the mind-robbing condition.

Neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease have been previously linked to hearing loss.

READ MORE One minute at-home dementia test could help identify the mind-robbing condition

However, experts are not sure if hearing loss is merely a symptom or the cause of the brain condition.

Looking at nearly 2,000 participants who were susceptible to hearing loss and dementia, the research team found those who wore hearing aids for three years lowered their chances of decline by 48 percent.

The participants were aged between 70 and 84 and completed tests of executive function, language and memory at the start of the study and then three years later.

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This research was the first randomised control trial to show such a clear connection. 

Professor Frank Lin, of Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and Bloomberg School of Public Health, told the Daily Mail: “These results provide compelling evidence that treating hearing loss is a powerful tool to protect cognitive function in later life, and possibly, over the long term, delay a dementia diagnosis.

“But any cognitive benefits of treating age-related hearing loss are likely to vary depending on an individual’s risk of cognitive decline.”

With the study results in mind, the scientists added that as many as 8 percent of dementia cases could be prevented by stopping hearing loss.

Other ways to reduce the risk of dementia

When it comes to a brain-healthy diet, what you cut down on is equally as important as what you include. The NHS recommends keeping your intake of saturated fat, salt and sugar in check.

Furthermore, you should strive for at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity each week and consider quitting smoking and keeping your alcohol intake low.

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