How Diabetes Raises Your Risk of Hearing Loss

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Diabetic woman using a flash glucose monitor.

Genetic predisposition, aging, and prolonged exposure to loud noise are all familiar factors that can contribute to hearing loss. But the link between hearing loss and diabetes isn’t as well known. Let’s dig a little bit deeper into that.

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, have this condition according to the CDC. And if you have diabetes, you’re twice as likely to develop hearing loss. Even in pre-diabetics, constituting 133 million Americans, the degree of hearing loss is 30% higher than in people with normal blood sugar levels.

Diabetes can result in nerve damage across a variety of bodily areas, encompassing the hands, feet, eyes, kidneys, and ears. The deterioration of the small blood vessels inside of your ears can be increased by high blood sugar levels. And on the other end of the spectrum, the transmission of nerve signals from the inner ear can be interrupted by low blood sugar. Both scenarios can contribute to hearing loss.

Damage to the kidneys, heart, nerves, eyes, and blood vessels can be caused by chronic high blood pressure due to unchecked diabetes.

You might have hearing loss if you detect any of these signs

If you aren’t actively monitoring the state of your hearing, hearing loss can gradually sneak up on you. In many situations, friends and colleagues might detect the issue before you become aware of it.

Some indicative signs of hearing loss include:

  • Perceiving others as mumbling
  • Trouble hearing on the phone
  • Regularly needing people to repeat what they said
  • Keeping the TV volume at a high level
  • Struggling in loud restaurants

If you encounter any of these difficulties or if somebody points out changes in your hearing, it’s worthwhile to consult with us. After carrying out a hearing exam, we will set up a baseline for future visits and help you with any issues you might be having with balance.

If you have diabetes, be proactive

We encourage anyone with diabetes to get an annual hearing test.

Maintain control of your blood sugar levels.

Make use of ear protection and steer clear of overly loud situations.

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The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.

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