Your Risk of Hearing Loss is Raised by Diabetes

Diabetic woman using a flash glucose monitor.

You may 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 link between hearing loss and diabetes is not as widely known. Allow us to elaborate.

How does diabetes increase your risk of hearing loss?

The prevalence of diabetes increases as you get older, and 37 million individuals, 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 experience hearing loss. Even in pre-diabetics, constituting 133 million Americans, the degree of hearing loss is 30% higher than in individuals with normal blood sugar levels.

A variety of body areas can be affected by diabetes: kidneys, hands, feet, eyes, and even ears. The degeneration of the small blood vessels inside of your ears can be accelerated by elevated blood sugar levels. 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 situations.

The lack of diabetes control induces persistent high blood pressure, leading to damage to the heart, blood vessels, kidneys, nerves, and eyes.

Signs you might be dealing with hearing loss

Hearing loss frequently happens slowly and can go unnoticed if you aren’t actively paying attention. In many situations, friends and colleagues may notice the issue before you identify it.

Here are a few signs of hearing loss:

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

If you experience any of these challenges or if somebody points out changes in your hearing, it’s important to consult with us. After carrying out a hearing exam, we will establish a baseline for future visits and help you with any issues you may be having with balance.

Be proactive if your managing diabetes

We encourage anybody with diabetes to get an annual hearing check.

Maintain control of your blood sugar levels.

Make use of ear protection and avoid overly loud situations.

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.