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New brain studies challenge conventional ideas about deafness

NEW studies suggest the brain works better if it has access to all sound, challenging the conventional way in which many traditional hearing technologies attempt to support hearing loss.

Thomas Behrens, chief audiologist ay Oticon, said: “To date, we haven’t been clear on what occurs inside the auditory cortex, the brain’s main hearing center. It has been a black box for all audiologists.

“A number of independent studies, as well as our own studies in cooperation with universities, have enlightened us on new basic brain function about how the brain processes sound.

“This is a significant milestone in hearing research and a breakthrough that gives us considerable insight into what is actually happening.”

Various studies have demonstrate that by suppressing the natural sound environment, the brain receives incomplete information, and reveals that the limiting approach to addressing hearing loss by conventional hearing aids means that the brain has to work even harder to fill in the gaps.

Thomas Behrens added: “Addressing hearing loss completely is fundamental to avoid hearing loss related health problems. If the brain isn’t fully supported to perform in a natural way, it compensates and changes, not to mention it experiences unnecessary stress.

“There is clear evidence that unaddressed hearing loss and the consequences for the brain leads to social isolation and depression, significantly increased risk of dementia, and more incidences of fall-related injuries.”




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