WHO has published guidelines to reduce the risk of cognitive decline and dementia. In the guidelines, hearing loss is one of the risk factors.
WHO has in 2019 published “Risk reduction of cognitive decline and dementia – WHO guidelines”.
In the guidelines, management of hearing loss is one of the 12 recommendations to reduce the risk of cognitive decline and dementia. Several scientific studies in the recent years have associated hearing loss with cognitive decline and dementia.
The other eleven recommendations are:
- Physical activity interventions
- Tobacco cessation interventions
- Nutritional interventions
- Interventions for alcohol use disorder
- Cognitive interventions
- Social activity
- Weight management
- Management of hypertension
- Management of diabetes mellitus
- Management of dyslipidemia
- Management of depression
Dementia – a global health problem
Dementia is a serious health problem worldwide. As WHO writes in the foreword of the guidelines:
“Dementia is a rapidly growing public health problem affecting around 50 million people around the world. There are nearly 10 million new cases every year and this figure is set to triple by 2050. While there is no curative treatment for dementia, the proactive management of modifiable risk factors can delay or slow onset or progression of the disease.”
The WHO guidelines on risk reduction of cognitive decline and dementia can be found here.