NHS hearing aid rationing may lead to increased dementia


Dr Frank Lin, Assistant Professor at John Hopkins University has recently told a conference in Washington that difficulty hearing can cause damage to memory and brain function.

Having to struggle to hear forces the brain to work harder to make up for the lack of sound.  This in turn puts additional strain on the brain, potentially speeding up mental decline.

Other theories suggest that deafness causes social isolation which is known to increase the chance of developing dementia.  Sufferers of deafness will often avoid social situations where their hearing loss may prevent them from interacting properly with others.

Another theory suggests that animal studies have indicated that deafness may change the structure of the brain causing it to shrink in areas related to language and memory.

In his presentation, Dr Lin stated “Hearing loss is incredibly common as we age, and as a result I think many clinicians typically perceive hearing loss as being an inevitable, and hence inconsequential, part of ageing.”

“I think the problem of hearing loss being an afterthought could be rectified to some degree with increased awareness, understanding and the availability of more accessible options for hearing care.”

Regrettably, budget pressures have caused a number of NHS Trusts in Britain to increasingly limit those who are provided with hearing aids.  Dr Lin’s research suggests that this may ultimately be counterproductive, if the effects of hearing loss were to lead to increased dementia.

84% of people who wear hearing aids, received them through the NHS.  Testing and fitting two aids costs the NHS £388.00 whereas hearing aids from private providers can cost around £3,000.00 per pair.

If you have hearing loss and if you have worked in a noisy environment or have been exposed to excessive levels of noise then our expert hearing loss solicitors will be able to advise you about making a no win no fee hearing loss claim.  If you pursue a successful claim, you may be able to recover the cost of hearing aids on a private basis.

What’s My Deafness Claim Worth has extensive experience in dealing with people suffering with hearing loss and tinnitus. We have a specialist team of solicitors, as well as a fully trained audiologist, who will fight for the compensation that you deserve. Our team understands that it can be a very difficult and daunting time for you and they will do their best to offer an unparalleled support network and specialist legal expertise. If you have suffered a personal injury, which was not your fault, you may be entitled to make a claim for compensation.If you are suffering from loss of hearing, buzzing or ringing in your ears, you may be entitled to claim for compensation.

If you have been affected by hearing loss or exposure to noisy working environments you should not hesitate to contact us or to try our ‘Calculate my Claim’ feature on the right hand side of this page to see what your claim may be worth. We understand that the symptoms that you are suffering from can have serious consequences on your day to day life. When fighting for your compensation we take into account any time you have had to take off work, any treatment you have had to pay for including the cost of hearing aids and any other losses that you may have incurred.

All claims are dealt with on a no win, no fee basis.

Call 0800 849 8700 to speak to a member of our specialist team of Industrial Disease lawyers who will assist you further with this matter.

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