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Sensory loss ups depression risk in women

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London, March 27 (IANS) Women who suffer from vision, hearing or dual sensory loss are more than twice as likely to report depression and anxiety than men with similar issues, a new study suggests.

The study, published in the International Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry, indicated that the prevalence of depression and anxiety was between 2 and 2.56 higher in women compared to men.

“Our study found that while sensory loss, particularly both vision and hearing loss, results in a higher number of the population reporting depression and anxiety, the association is particularly strong in women,” said lead author Shahina Pardhan from Anglia Ruskin University (ARU).

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“This highlights the importance of interventions to address vision and hearing loss, especially in women. Some sensory loss is preventable or treatable, and clearly these issues are taking their toll not just on physical health, but mental health too,” Pardhan added.

For the study, the research team looked at survey data from more than 23,000 adults, where participants had self-reported whether they had suffered depression or anxiety, and also whether they experienced vision, hearing, or dual (both vision and hearing) sensory impairment.

Women with dual sensory impairment were almost three and a half times more likely to report depression or anxiety than those who did not have any impairment, while men with dual sensory impairments were more than two and a half times more likely to experience depression and almost twice as likely to report anxiety than those with no impairment.

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