Research group from the Gerontology Research Center, based at the University of Jyväskylä’s Department of Health Sciences, has received a three-year research funding from the Academy of Finland. Hearing, remembering and living well: Paying attention to challenges that older adults face in noisy environments is one of the six multinational and multidisciplinary research projects to receive funding in the call “Active and Healthy Ageing Across the Life Course” by ERA-AGE 2 (European Research Area in Ageing Research).
The aim of the study is to investigate whether hearing difficulties influence older adults’ social participation and life-space mobility. Life-space mobility describes the size of the spatial area where a person moves as well as the frequency of travels in that area. Life-space mobility reflects the balance between individual resources and environmental challenges in person’s daily life in the real world situation. This study is based on the assumption that changes in hearing and cognition in aging and/or a noisy environment can cause deprivation of environmental information for the person, which in turn can be expressed in uncertainty and poorer functioning in mobility tasks. Better understanding the challenges a hearing impaired person has to face in everyday life, and understanding the consequences of poor hearing for the mobility are needed in order to promote the older person´s equal opportunities to participate actively in the society.
Anne Viljanen, PhD, Post doc –researcher
Gerontology Research Center and Department of Health Sciences
University of Jyväskylä
Research partners are:
Daniel A. Levy, The Interdisciplinary Center Herzliya, Israel
Antje Heinrich, MRC Institute of Hearing Research, UK
Bruce Schneider, University of Toronto, Canada
Jean-Pierre Gagné, Université de Montréal, Canada