You might be familiar with the various factors contributing to hearing loss, including the impact of getting older, genetic predisposition within families, or extended exposure to loud noises. However, you may find it interesting to understand the link between diabetes and hearing loss. Let us elaborate.
How does diabetes raise your risk of hearing loss?
The prevalence of diabetes increases as you get older, and 37 million people, or 9% of the United States population, cope with this condition according to the CDC. And if you’re dealing with diabetes, you’re two times as likely to experience hearing loss. Even in pre-diabetics, constituting 133 million Americans, the rate of hearing loss is 30% higher than in people with normal blood sugar levels.
A variety of body areas can be impacted by diabetes: kidneys, hands, feet, eyes, and even ears. The degeneration of the small blood vessels inside of your ears can be accelerated by elevated blood sugar levels. And on the other end of the spectrum, the transmission of nerve signals from the inner ear can be disrupted by low blood sugar. Worsened hearing loss can be the outcome of both situations.
Damage to the kidneys, heart, nerves, eyes, and blood vessels can be caused by persistent high blood pressure resulting from unchecked diabetes.
You may have hearing loss if you detect any of these signs
Hearing loss frequently develops slowly and can go unnoticed if you aren’t actively paying attention. In many instances, friends and colleagues might detect the issue before you identify it.
Here are a few signs of hearing loss:
- Difficulty following phone conversations
- Frequently asking others to repeat themselves
- Keeping the TV volume at a high level
- Perceiving others as mumbling
- Struggling in noisy establishments
It’s important to contact us for a consultation if you experience any of these signs or if somebody points out your hearing changes. We will carry out a hearing exam that will establish a baseline for future assessments and also deal with any balance-related concerns.
Be proactive if your navigating diabetes
Getting a yearly hearing test is important, and that’s especially true for somebody with diabetes.
Keep your blood sugar levels within the desired range.
Utilize ear protection and avoid overly loud settings.