A Link Between Stress and Hearing Loss

A Link Between Stress and Hearing Loss

In hearing health, hearing loss by Laurie Duffy, M.S.

As the world becomes more connected through the Internet, we can achieve more faster than ever before. Our friends, family and work are often just a few clicks away. The amount of information at our fingertips is an empowering thing but this level of connectivity can be equally overwhelming. The amount of choices out there can cause some people extreme stress and fatigue. The fight or flight response to humans as a species has been important to our survival in the past but in this modern age over stimulation can cause more stress than we need. The Free Medical Dictionary describes chronic stress as “A state of prolonged tension from internal or external stressors, which may cause various physical manifestations.” Too much stress can cause a breakdown of physical health and this includes your hearing

Chronic Stress’s Affect on Your Ears

The connection between hearing loss and chronic stress is all about circulation and stress’s effect on this. The cilia are little hairs in the inner ear that use your blood flow to hear the world around you. The cilia are extremely fragile and an insufficient flow of blood is enough to slowly destroy these important tools of hearing. Chronic stress can affect the slowing or stopping of blood to your ears, as overproduction of adrenaline instigated by stress can be a major factor in diminished blood flow.

Know the Symptoms

Once you understand the danger of stress on your life and your ears the importance of keeping your stress levels down appears more important t than ever. While stress can sometimes be unavoidable it is important to do what you can to keep stress levels to manageable levels. It’s also important to monitor your hearing in relationship to stress so if symptoms arise you can treat them before they get to a point of disrepair. Some symptoms of damage to your ears due to stress include:

  • A feeling of stuffed or blocked ears
  • Failure to detect specific frequencies
  • Pressure or pain in the ear
  • Loss of hearing in either or both ears
  • Sound feels muted or distant

Keep Your Stress Levels to a Minimum

If you experience any of these symptoms it is important to schedule an appointment with us at HearCare RI as soon as possible. The sooner you identify damage to your hearing the higher your chances of stopping further damage from occurring. It is important to remember that once your ears are damaged usually you will never completely get your original hearing back. That is why it is best to keep your stress levels managed in the first place.

It is hard to stay calm in this modern age when the amount of information available makes it seem like its hard to even take a breath as our lives feel faster and faster. That however is exactly what you need to focus on. If you are feeling stressed, stop and take a deep breath. When you breathe deeply you instigate a relaxation response in your body. Studies suggest that deep breathing can slow metabolism, lower your heartbeat, relax muscles and decrease blood pressure. Remember to stay positive when you can. Keep your to do list to a minimum and plan time in your busy schedule for things you love that bring you calm, whether it be meditation, yoga, bathing rituals, a good book or exercise.

Hearing Loss Causes Stress

Stress can cause hearing loss, but hearing loss can also produce allot of stress. Struggling to hear daily is the opposite of relaxing. If you believe you have a hearing loss it is important to schedule a hearing test right away. If hearing aids are recommended it is important to wear them everywhere you go daily. The Hearing aids of today not only help people to hear better than ever before in a wide range of situations and environments, they also have tinnitus features that can ease that condition hence reducing stress. When you can communicate clearly with Hearing aids your stress levels will also become noticeably lower. Don’t let stress get the better of you. Enjoy the life you have with healthy hearing habits and stress management practices to make the most of this precious life.