How Diabetes Raises Your Risk of Hearing Loss

Diabetic woman using a flash glucose monitor.

Genetic predisposition, aging, and prolonged exposure to loud sound are all common factors that can contribute to hearing loss. However, you may find it intriguing to understand the link between diabetes and hearing loss. Let’s dig a little deeper into that.

How is your risk of developing hearing loss raised by diabetes?

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

Various body areas can be affected by diabetes: kidneys, hands, feet, eyes, and even ears. Elevated blood sugar levels can lead to the degeneration of small blood vessels and nerves in the inner ears. In contrast, low blood sugar levels can interrupt 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 chronic high blood pressure, causing damage to the heart, blood vessels, kidneys, nerves, and eyes.

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

Hearing loss frequently happens gradually and can go unnoticed if you’re not actively paying attention. In many situations, friends and co-workers might observe the issue before you become aware of it.

Here are a few signs of hearing loss:

  • Frequently asking others to repeat themselves
  • Always having to crank up the volume of your devices and TV
  • Having a tough time hearing in noisy places
  • Perceiving others as mumbling
  • Difficulty hearing on the phone

If you notice any of these challenges or if someone points out changes in your hearing, it’s worthwhile to consult with us. We will carry out a hearing examination that will establish a baseline for future assessments and also address any balance-related challenges.

Be proactive if your navigating diabetes

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

Keep your blood sugar levels within the desired range.

Utilize ear protection and steer clear of overly loud settings.

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.