Why Sense Health is Brain Health

Why Sense Health is Brain Health

Our senses are not merely ways to experience the world; they are vital inputs that play a significant role in brain function and health. Decline in sensory abilities is linked to cognitive decline and other health issues, making regular sensory testing a critical component of preventive health care.

Understanding Cognitive Reserve and Sensory Health

Cognitive reserve refers to the brain's ability to improvise and find alternate ways of getting a job done. It’s a resilience that helps delay the onset of cognitive decline despite brain aging or damage. Research has shown that maintaining strong sensory health contributes significantly to building and sustaining cognitive reserve. When senses like vision, hearing, taste, smell, and touch are actively engaged and functioning well, they provide constant stimulation that keeps the brain active and healthy.

Research Linking Sensory Decline and Cognitive Decline

Several studies have established a clear link between sensory decline and cognitive decline. For instance, hearing loss has been shown to increase the risk of cognitive decline by up to fivefold. Similarly, impaired vision and reduced olfactory function (sense of smell) have been associated with an increased risk of dementia. These findings highlight that sensory health is a crucial factor in maintaining cognitive function as we age.

Hearing Loss and Cognitive Decline

A study published in JAMA Internal Medicine found that older adults with hearing loss are more likely to develop cognitive problems than those with normal hearing.

Vision Impairment and Cognitive Decline

Research from the University of Michigan indicated that poor vision in older adults is associated with an increased risk of dementia. 

Olfactory Dysfunction and Cognitive Decline

A study in the Journal of Alzheimer's Disease reported that a decrease in the ability to smell is linked to a higher risk of cognitive decline.

Senses are Critical Inputs to the Brain

Our senses provide essential data that the brain processes to understand and interact with the world. This sensory information is vital for learning, memory, and overall cognitive function. When these sensory inputs decline, the brain receives less information, which leads to reduced cognitive stimulation and, eventually, cognitive decline.

Sensory Decline as a Warning Sign

Sensory decline is not only a sign of aging but also a potential early warning sign of various diseases. For example, a decrease in the sense of smell can be an early indicator of Alzheimer's disease. Hearing loss has been linked to social isolation, which is a risk factor for depression and dementia. Therefore, paying attention to changes in sensory abilities can provide critical early warnings and opportunities for intervention.

The Need for At-Home Testing

Given the importance of sensory health for cognitive function, regular testing of sensory abilities is essential. At-home testing provides a convenient and effective way to monitor sensory health and detect early changes. Tools like the SuperSenses 5-Sense Cognitive Performance Kit enable individuals to assess their sensory health from the comfort of their home, providing immediate feedback and personalized recommendations.

Benefits of At-Home Testing:

  • Early Detection: Catch sensory decline early to address potential health issues promptly.
  • Convenience: Conduct tests at your own pace and schedule without needing to visit a clinic.
  • Personalized Care: With SuperSenses, receive tailored recommendations based on your test results to improve and maintain sensory health.
  • Proactive Health Management: Regular monitoring allows for proactive steps in managing health and preventing cognitive decline.

Sense health is intrinsically linked to brain health. Our senses provide vital inputs that keep our brains engaged and functioning optimally. Declines in sensory abilities are often precursors to cognitive decline and other health issues. Regular at-home testing of sensory health is a practical and effective approach to maintaining cognitive vitality, detecting early signs of potential problems, and taking proactive steps to enhance overall well-being. By prioritizing sensory health, we can protect and improve our brain health, ensuring a better quality of life as we age.

For more information on how to monitor and improve your sensory health, explore the tools and resources available through SuperSenses. 


Stern, Y. (2009). Cognitive reserve. Neuropsychologia, 47(10), 2015-2028.
Lin, F. R., Metter, E. J., O'Brien, R. J., Resnick, S. M., Zonderman, A. B., & Ferrucci, L. (2011). Hearing loss and incident dementia. Archives of Neurology, 68(2), 214-220.

Chen, S. P., Bhattacharya, J., & Pershing, S. (2017). Association of vision loss with cognition in older adults. JAMA Ophthalmology, 135(9), 963-970.

Devanand, D. P., Lee, S., Manly, J., Andrews, H., Schupf, N., Doty, R. L., & Stern, Y. (2015). Olfactory deficits predict cognitive decline and Alzheimer dementia in an urban community. Journal of Alzheimer's Disease, 45(2), 467-473.

Wilson, R. S., Yu, L., Schneider, J. A., Arnold, S. E., Buchman, A. S., & Bennett, D. A. (2011). Chronic distress and incidence of mild cognitive impairment. Neurology, 76(4), 328-335.


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