So THAT’S the reason! A common but little-known condition could explain why your partner ignores you

So THAT’S the reason! A common but little-known condition could explain why your partner ignores you By Julie Cook For The Daily Mail | 08:51 EST, 14 February 2018 | See Original Article Here Listen up: Auditory processing disorder is a problem with how the brain interprets sound Ask 14-year-old Pippa Marchant to describe the machine that washes clothes and she might pause, then say: ‘The shaky-shaky thing.’ She knows what it is really called, but she can’t find the word. Because Pippa has a condition called auditory processing disorder, or APD. APD is essentially a problem with how the brain interprets sound. It may explain why some people struggle to hear speech in a noisy restaurant and could even be the reason your spouse seems to ignore you. Listen up: Auditory processing disorder is a problem with how the brain interprets sound People with APD find it hard to distinguish between very similar words or sounds. Unlike with typical hearing loss, in APD sounds reach the brain — people with the condition hear them, but find it difficult to process them. This means APD is hard to diagnose, as standard hearing tests rarely pick it up. ‘I’m sure there are thousands of children and adults in the UK who have not been correctly diagnosed,’ says Dr Ralph Holme, director of biomedical research at Action on Hearing Loss. CHILDREN CAN BE MISDIAGNOSED In cases where an adult has it but was never diagnosed, people might think of them as rude or unresponsive. Family members may complain about being ignored while, say experts, the person with APD may become anxious or...

Hearing loss a possible risk factor for dementia

In the journals Published: March, 2018 | Harvard Health | See Original Article Here Older adults who develop hearing loss are more likely to experience greater cognitive decline and develop dementia than their counterparts without hearing problems, according to a meta-analysis published online Dec. 7, 2017, by JAMA Otolaryngology — Head and Neck Surgery. Researchers examined data from 36 studies including more than 20,000 people who underwent both cognitive evaluations and hearing tests. Those with age-related hearing loss were more likely to have cognitive impairment or a diagnosis of dementia. The study found a small but statistically meaningful association between hearing loss and a variety of specific cognitive abilities, including executive function, memory, processing speed, and visuospatial ability (how you recognize shapes and sizes and estimate the distance between two objects). The association between hearing loss and weaker cognitive skills was still strong even after accounting for risk factors like high blood pressure and smoking. It is not yet known how hearing loss may be related to cognitive decline and dementia. The researchers speculated that these abilities may share a common neural pathway. For instance, hearing loss may require increased mental energy to perceive speech, which leaves fewer mental resources available for other cognitive processes like memory. There also may be an indirect link. For example, hearing loss can lead to greater social isolation, which can increase the risk of cognitive...

How hearing loss and depression are connected

Posted by Karl Bates-Duke | Duke University | See Original Article Here Hearing loss can create chronic stress that can lead to depression, but high levels of social support—from family, friends, and others—can help alleviate depression, according to new research. Given that hearing loss is a growing social and physical health problem, the study suggests a need for increased vigilance regarding hearing loss among older adults, says study author Jessica West, a PhD student in sociology at Duke University. Here, West discusses her research, which appears in the journal Social Science & Medicine. Q: Your research examines the correlation between hearing loss and depression. That seems a logical connection: why study it in the way you did? A: Despite how common hearing loss is, it is actually quite understudied. A handful of studies have looked at the relationship between hearing loss and mental health over time, but the results from these studies are mixed: some find a relationship between hearing loss and more depressive symptoms, while others do not. On top of the mixed findings, most studies have been based overseas, and studies based in the US have tended to use state-specific datasets, like the Alameda County Study, which drew from Oakland and Berkeley, CA. I use the Health and Retirement Study, which is nationally representative of adults aged 50 and older in the US, and therefore more generalizable to the US population. I frame hearing loss as a physical health stressor that can impact mental health, and that social support can alter this relationship by preventing a person from experiencing stress or reducing the severity of a reaction to it....

Hearing loss can be very isolating, hurting relationships with family and friends

By Consumer Reports February 17 at 2:00 PM | See Original Article Here Consumer Reports has no financial relationship with any advertisers on this site. We’ve known for a while that hearing loss can increase the risk of depression and issues related to concentration and memory, and possibly even dementia. Now, mounting research, including a recent British review of studies, suggests that hearing problems can take a significant toll on relationships with spouses, children, friends and ­co-workers. “Hearing loss is a family issue, not just an individual one,” explains Catherine Palmer, director of audiology and hearing aids at the University of Pittsburgh, who was not involved in the British research. “It’s long been understood that a person with hearing loss may start to withdraw from social situations, but there’s been less focus on the effects on their partners — the social isolation as well as the burden of being a loved ones ‘ears.’ ” Here’s what to know about this research and how to curb social problems related to hearing loss. What the research shows The research, conducted at the University of Nottingham and published in the journal Trends in Hearing, looked at more than 70 previous studies on the complaints made by people with hearing loss and those closest to them. “We found that hearing loss impacted people’s social relationships in all facets of their life,” says lead study author and audiologist Venessa Vas. “Oftentimes, both parties became depressed and socially withdrawn.” Spouses, in particular, reported feeling anxious and stressed about their partners’ hearing loss. “The whole process is draining for them, as they often have to serve as another set...

Few Researchers Consider the Effect of Hearing Loss in Physician/Patient Communication, NYU Study Finds

Few Researchers Consider the Effect of Hearing Loss in Physician/Patient Communication, NYU Study Finds April 5, 2017 | NYU Health and Medicine | See Original Here Of the 67 papers reviewed, only 16 (23.9%) included any mention of the effects that hearing loss can have on health care interactions. Doctors believe that communication with their patients is important, but most studies of physician/elderly patient communication do not mention that hearing loss may affect this interaction. The findings come from a review led by two NYU professors published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society. Many researchers have explored communication between doctors and their patients, but how many of them have considered the importance of hearing loss? To investigate this question, a team led by Dr. Joshua Chodosh of New York University School of Medicine and Dr. Jan Blustein,  the NYU’s Robert F. Wagner School of Public Service and the School of Medicine, reviewed the published medical literature on doctor-patient communication, selecting research studies that involved patients aged 60 years and older. Of the 67 papers included in their study, only 16 (23.9%) included any mention of hearing loss. In some cases (4 out of the 67), people with hearing loss were excluded from the study. Three of the studies reported on an association between hearing loss and quality of care. In only one study did the researchers offer patients some kind of hearing assistance to see whether it would improve communication. (It found that offering hearing assistance improved patients’ understanding.) “Hearing loss has long been neglected in the medical community,” said Chodosh. “As a geriatrician, I see many patients...