Diabetic woman using a flash glucose monitor.

You might be familiar with the various factors contributing to hearing loss, such as the impact of getting older, genetic predisposition within families, or prolonged exposure to loud sounds. But the connection between hearing loss and diabetes isn’t as well known. Let us elaborate.

How does diabetes raise your risk of hearing loss?

As per the CDC, 9% or 37 million people in the United States are diagnosed with diabetes, and this prevalence rises with age. Hearing loss is two times as prevalent in people with diabetes in comparison to those without the condition. Even in pre-diabetics, constituting 133 million Americans, the rate of hearing loss is 30% higher than in people with normal blood sugar levels.

Various body regions can be affected by diabetes: kidneys, hands, feet, eyes, and even ears. High blood sugar levels can cause the deterioration of small blood vessels and nerves in the inner ears. In contrast, low blood sugar levels can disrupt the transmission of nerve signals from the inner ear to the brain. Worsened hearing loss can be the result of both scenarios.

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

You may have hearing loss if you notice any of these signs

Hearing loss frequently occurs gradually and can go unnoticed if you aren’t actively paying attention. In many cases, friends and colleagues may detect the issue before you identify it.

Here are a few signs of hearing loss:

  • Perceiving others as mumbling
  • Struggling in noisy establishments
  • Trouble following phone conversations
  • Frequently asking others to repeat themselves
  • Keeping the TV volume really loud

If you notice any of these difficulties or if somebody points out changes in your hearing, it’s essential to consult with us. We will conduct a hearing test that will establish a baseline for future assessments and also deal with any balance-related challenges.

Be proactive if your managing diabetes

Getting a yearly hearing test is important, and that’s particularly true for somebody with diabetes.

Keep your blood sugar levels within the desired range.

Use ear protection and avoid overly loud situations.

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