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What is heard and what cannot cause a risk of falling

What is heard and what cannot cause a risk of falling 1


According to new research by the New York Eye and Ear Infirmary, what a person hears and what they do not hear can also have a direct impact on their balance (NYEE ) from Mount Sinai Hospital, published this Thursday in the journal & # 39; JAMA Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery.

This study provides a better understanding of the relationship between hearing loss and the fall of people, especially in the older population. The results could lead doctors to identify hearing loss in patients at high risk of falling and reach it at an early stage so that it can be treated quickly.

"Previous studies have shown that hearing loss is an independent risk factor for falls, even for those who are not dizzy. However, the reason why it occurs has never been fully understood, although it is believed to be with it is related to inner ear.

This study found that the sounds we hear affect our balance by giving us important environmental information. "We use sound information to keep ourselves balanced, especially in cases , in other senses like seeing or proprioception, they are engaged, "explains lead author Maura Cosetti, associate professor of ear, nose and throat medicine at the Icahn School of Medicine on Mount Sinai and director of the Ear Institute in NYEE.

"The balance is complicated and complicated coordination of many different sensory inputs. When people fall, doctors generally focus on vision problems, look for neuropathies in foot and bone problems, and completely ignore hearing problems, he warns. This review underlines the importance of hearing for our sense of balance. And because hearing loss can be treated, a hearing test is a crucial first step. "

In this study, a team of researchers from Mount Sinai and the Steinhardt School of Culture at New York University conducted a comprehensive review of all published research results from the start (PubMed and Cochran Database of Scopus), which showed the relationship between Examined sound and balance.

They analyzed 28 medical articles with more than 700 patients, many of whom focused on areas that physicians who treat falls would not find, such as audio engineering, computer science, physics, and Psychology: The authors combined all the studies and looked for trends in the data.

Studies They analyzed mainly healthy adults, but also patients with congenital blindness and vestibular loss (damage to the inner ear that causes equilibrium disorders) and eyes (including Dizziness) and different degrees of severity of hearing loss.

All studies investigated how noise affected a person's ability to balance when standing, often with eyes closed and standing on a flexible and soft surface. They also observed how using noise canceling headphones (a complete lack of sound) affected the balance.

Some studies reproduced white or static noise, while others used ambient noise such as cocktail chats or running water. They found that it was harder for people to stay balanced or to stand still on an uneven surface when they were silent, but they had a better balance when they heard noise.

The authors found that the type of sound was important when it came to balance. In particular, continuous background noise (generally static) was most useful for subjects to maintain their focus. Some types of noise actually caused poor balance. For example, some people who heard the sound jumping from side to side through headphones (ie beeps from left to right) had difficulty standing upright.

The authors believe that this may be due to the fact that sound can act as a "hearing anchor". In particular, people use sounds like white noise to subconsciously create a mental picture of the environment that keeps us on the floor.

Research analysis also showed that sound became more important for equilibrium when subjects were assigned difficult balance tasks (e.g. standing on a moving floor) or when patients had existing sensory problems.

When people with vision loss, hearing loss or balance problems heard stationary sounds, their posture improved dramatically. This suggests that people trust hearing more when other senses are changed.

"This research suggests that noise can have a stabilizing effect on balance, possibly as an" anchor "that patients can rely on when other senses are less reliable, and shows that it is not possible to hear noise, which has resulted in a poorer balance. Ultimately, patients are at greater risk of instability and falls due to inability to hear, "added Dr. Cosetti added.

"Elderly patients have a number of factors that increase their risk of falling, and hearing loss is a significant and little-recognized factor," he continues. "Age-related hearing loss is common and affects up to two thirds of those over 70 and should be considered and monitored in people at high risk of falling. Further studies will confirm whether treatment for this hearing loss (with hearing aids or other implants) is also a type of" Help “serves for balance" like a stick ".

The analysis reveals large gaps in research into hearing loss and balance. Future studies are needed to determine different levels of hearing loss and the effects of hearing aids and cochlea – Check implants for balance.

The researchers add that more studies with everyday sounds such as traffic, shopping centers or airports are needed to better understand the risk of falling in people with hearing loss be carried out on older adults concentrate.

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