Andrew Campbell from Neuaudio Hearing and Brain Health a practice in Burke Road Camberwell gave a very informative if at time scary presentation about hearing loss and the impact this may have on the brain and possibly the earlier onset of dementia if the loss is left untreated.
Andrew's message was to not leave hearing loss untreated as it can impact the brain in areas including memory, speech, language and hearing. Andrew indicated that up to 40% of loss in  brain volume can be due to hearing loss. 35% of cases of dementia could, it is estimated, be lessened if hearing loss had been treated.
After the fitting of a hearing aid/assistance  there can be structural improvement in the brain, but patients need to wear the aids for at least 12 hours a day. People are more likely to take action to address vision loss than hearing loss.
The main causes of hearing loss are aging  and then noise. Hearing loss can lead to social isolation - people struggle to hear in a group. Loneliness can lead to an earlier age of death and stress. Andrew advised that attention to hearing loss can lead to an overall improvement in family relationships.
Andrew indicated that there have been advances in hearing aids through improved rechargeable batteries and that brain training programs can also be very helpful. His book Catching the Mind Robber offers more resources and he recommends seeing an independent audiologist if you have any sign of hearing loss.
Andrew was a great presenter and provided very valuable advice and that we all should treat hearing loss as we would any other disease - get it treated.