While studies show that hearing loss is twice as likely in those who have diabetes than those who don’t – the causes are a bit cloudy. Here we discuss some attributes linking diabetes and hearing loss.
Those with diabetes know that managing the disease is vital and when blood sugar levels are not controlled, the risk of developing hearing loss is increased. It could be down to the fact that high blood pressure can damage and weaken blood vessels around the body, including your ears.
If diabetes has been mismanaged for a long period of time then there could be a high amount of damage to your ear network, which is full of small blood vessels. You can also be exposed to nerve damage when you have this disease. Therefore, your auditory nerves could suffer and result in hearing loss.
Maintaining a good standard of diabetic care is important. Be consistent with your treatment plan, monitor your symptoms and regularly visit your GP. If you have hearing loss and diabetes it doesn’t necessarily mean that the two are linked. It may be due to a long duration of loud noise exposure, ageing, genetics, a virus or structural problems to your ears.
In some cases, a few forms of hearing loss in those who have diabetes is short term. Seeking early treatment increases the chances of recovery. However, your hearing future all depends on the level of hearing loss and the success of treatment available.
If you have diabetes you should get your hearing health checked every year. Other things you can do are:
As someone’s hearing weakens, the chances of social anxiety and depression are more likely. Those with diabetes who are isolated socially and have become depressed may find managing their treatment much harder. These are the other important variables that have the ability to spiral out of control – keeping a close eye on your hearing is key!
On another note, if you know someone who is diabetic and showing signs of hearing loss or social and mental behaviour changes – then advise them to seek medical help. It might not be immediately apparent to them, and sometimes an outsider’s perspective can really help early treatment and diagnosis. Resulting in a better outcome and recovery.
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