Man talking with healthcare provider about his diabetes and hearing loss.

Your body is similar to an ecosystem. In the natural world, if something happens to the pond, all of the birds and fish suffer the consequences; and all of the animals and plants that depend on the birds will disappear if the birds disappear. We might not know it but our body functions on very similar principals. That’s why a large number of afflictions can be connected to something which at first appears so isolated like hearing loss.

This is, in a sense, proof of the interdependence of your body and it’s resemblance to an ecosystem. When something affects your hearing, it may also impact your brain. These situations are called comorbid, a fancy (and specialized) label that illustrates a link between two disorders while not necessarily pointing directly at a cause-and-effect relationship.

The conditions that are comorbid with hearing loss can give us lots of information concerning our bodies’ ecosystems.

Hearing Loss And The Conditions That Are Related to it

So, let’s assume that you’ve been recognizing the symptoms of hearing loss for the last couple of months. It’s harder to follow along with discussions in restaurants. The volume of your television is constantly getting louder. And some sounds sound so far away. It would be a good choice at this point to set up an appointment with a hearing professional.

Your hearing loss is connected to a number of health issues whether your aware of it or not. Comorbidity with hearing loss has been documented with the following health conditions.

  • Cardiovascular disease: hearing loss and cardiovascular disease aren’t always linked. In other situations, cardiovascular issues can make you more subject to hearing loss. The reason for this is that trauma to the blood vessels of the inner ear is one of the first symptoms of cardiovascular disease. Your hearing might suffer as a result of the of that trauma.
  • Depression: a whole host of concerns can be the result of social isolation due to hearing loss, many of which are related to your mental health. So anxiety and depression, not surprisingly, have been found in several studies, to have a high rate of comorbidity with hearing loss.
  • Vertigo and falls: your primary tool for balance is your inner ear. There are some types of hearing loss that can play havoc with your inner ear, causing dizziness and vertigo. Falls are increasingly dangerous as you age and falls can happen whenever someone loses their balance
  • Dementia: untreated hearing loss has been connected to a higher risk of dementia, although the underlying cause of that relationship is unclear. Many of these incidents of dementia and also cognitive decline can be slowed, according to research, by wearing hearing aids.
  • Diabetes: similarly, your entire nervous system can be influenced in a negative way by diabetes (specifically in your extremities). one of the areas particularly likely to be harmed are the nerves in the ear. Hearing loss can be fully caused by this damage. But your symptoms can be multiplied because diabetes related nerve damage can cause you to be more susceptible to hearing loss from other factors.

What Can You Do?

It can seem a little frightening when all those health conditions get added together. But one thing should be kept in mind: huge positive impact can be gained by treating your hearing loss. Though researchers and scientists don’t really know, for example, why hearing loss and dementia show up together so often, they do know that managing hearing loss can dramatically lower your dementia risks.

So the best course of action, no matter what comorbid condition you might be concerned about, is to have your hearing tested.

Part of an Ecosystem

That’s the reason why more health care specialists are viewing hearing health with new eyes. Instead of being a somewhat limited and targeted area of concern, your ears are thought of as closely linked to your overall wellness. In other words, we’re beginning to view the body more like an interconnected ecosystem. Hearing loss isn’t always an isolated situation. So it’s more significant than ever that we keep your eye on the entirety, not to the proverbial pond or the birds in isolation, but to your health as a whole.

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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.