How Diabetes Increases Your Risk of Hearing Loss

Diabetic woman using a flash glucose monitor.

You may be acquainted with the numerous factors contributing to hearing loss, like the impact of aging, genetic predisposition within families, or extended exposure to loud noises. But the connection between hearing loss and diabetes isn’t as widely known. Allow us to elaborate.

How does diabetes increase 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 increases with age. And if you have diabetes, you’re two times as likely to develop hearing loss. Even in pre-diabetics, constituting 133 million Americans, the rate of hearing loss is 30% higher than in individuals with normal blood sugar levels.

Diabetes can result in nerve damage across a variety of bodily regions, encompassing the hands, feet, eyes, kidneys, and ears. High blood sugar levels can lead to the deterioration 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 outcome of both situations.

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

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

If you aren’t actively monitoring the state of your hearing, hearing loss can gradually sneak up on you. It’s not uncommon for people around you to notice your hearing loss before you notice it.

Here are a few signs of hearing loss:

  • Always having to crank up the volume of your devices and TV
  • Struggling in noisy restaurants
  • Feeling as if people are mumbling when they speak
  • Difficulty following phone conversations
  • Constantly needing people to repeat what they said

If you encounter any of these challenges or if somebody points out changes in your hearing, it’s worthwhile to consult with us. We will perform a hearing exam that will establish a baseline for future assessments and also deal with any balance-related concerns.

If you have diabetes, be proactive

We encourage all individuals who has diabetes to get an annual hearing check.

Maintain your blood sugar levels within the desired range.

Steer clear of loud noises and safeguard your ears by using earplugs.

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.