Hearing loss may cause depression in old older people, says a University of Manchester study.And poorer people had up to twice the risk of developing depression that those in the highest wealth quintiles.
It is the first time scientists have revealed that hearing loss affected people according to their socio-economic position. The data also showed that hearing aids have a stronger effect in alleviating symptoms of depression in poorer socio-economic groups than in wealthy ones. And improved symptoms of depression were more pronounced among those using their hearing aids 'most of the time' than those using them 'some of the time'.
Researchers analysed analysed data of almost 75,000 people aged aged 50–89 in the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing, from 2002 to 2017.
Dr Dalia Tsimpida said: “Hearing aids could support the most vulnerable people who already lacked life opportunities, compared to the most affluent. That way they were able to take more control of their lives and keep participating actively in society.”The study is published in Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology.