A new report from The Lancet Commission makes one of the strongest cases yet for the treatment of hearing loss. University College London (UCL) researchers concluded that untreated hearing loss in midlife is the largest modifiable risk factor for developing dementia, says an article in The Hearing Review.
A total of 12 modifiable risk factors with strong evidence for a causal link to dementia are included in the report. The top three risk factors are: untreated hearing loss in midlife (accounting for 8% of all dementia cases), less education early in life (7%) and smoking later in life (5%).
Participating in the study were 28 leading dementia experts from around the world, including faculties of UCL’s Brain Sciences and Population Health Sciences, along with colleagues from several other countries.
In addition to presenting their findings, the report’s authors outlined nine recommendations for policymakers and individuals, among them, encouraging the use of hearing aids for hearing loss and reducing the risk of hearing loss by protecting the ears from high noise levels.