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Question: A family member is 66 with early-onset dementia and significant hearing loss. I want to plan for the future and be as proactive as possible. What can I expect with hearing loss in the presence of dementia?

Answer: Preparing for the management of emotional distress, as well as counseling family members and caregivers, will help minimize the preventable problems associated with both dementia and hearing loss. Attention to psychological, social, and personalized care needs involve hearing health. Communication is key to success. The correlation between dementia and hearing loss is becoming increasingly recognized and documented. It is estimated that one in every three people over 65 has hearing loss. The occurrence of dementia with untreated hearing loss is also common. It is wise to treat the hearing loss as soon as possible; then we can discuss options and follow up at that time.