You may be familiar with the various aspects contributing to hearing loss, such as the impact of aging, genetic predisposition within families, or prolonged exposure to loud noises. However, you may find it interesting to understand the connection between diabetes and hearing loss. Let us elaborate.
How does diabetes increase your risk of hearing loss?
As per the CDC, 9% or 37 million individuals in the United States are diagnosed with diabetes, and this prevalence rises with age. And if you’re dealing with diabetes, you’re twice as likely to develop hearing loss. 133 million Americans are pre-diabetic and even they have a 30% higher risk of developing hearing loss than people whose blood sugar is normal.
Diabetes can result in nerve damage across a variety of bodily areas, including the hands, feet, eyes, kidneys, and ears. High blood sugar levels can lead to the deterioration of small blood vessels and nerves in the inner ears. And on the other end of the spectrum, the transmission of nerve signals from the inner ear can be disrupted by low blood sugar. Both situations can contribute to hearing loss.
Damage to the kidneys, heart, nerves, eyes, and blood vessels can be caused by chronic high blood pressure resulting from unchecked diabetes.
You might have hearing loss if you notice any of these signs
If you’re not actively monitoring the state of your hearing, hearing loss can slowly sneak up on you. In many instances, friends and colleagues might detect the issue before you become aware of it.
Here are a few signs of hearing loss:
- Perceiving others as mumbling
- Trouble following phone conversations
- Having a hard time hearing in noisy places
- Frequently asking others to repeat themselves
- Always needing to turn up the volume of your devices and TV
It’s important to contact us for a consultation if you notice any of these signs or if somebody points out your hearing changes. After performing a hearing examination, we will establish a baseline for future visits and help you with any issues you might be having with balance.
Be proactive if your managing diabetes
We encourage anyone who has diabetes to get an annual hearing check.
Keep control of your blood sugar levels.
Make use of ear protection and steer clear of overly loud settings.