What You Don’t Know Can Hurt Your Hearing

You probably already know that the aging process and noise exposure can contribute to hearing loss, but there are other risk factors you may not know about. We review five surprising risk factors for hearing loss below.

Sleep Apnea

Studies have closely linked sleep apnea to hearing loss. While medical experts aren’t exactly sure why there’s a link, they hypothesize that it’s because sleep apnea reduces blood supply to the sensory hair cells within the inner ear that convert soundwaves into electrical energy, depriving them of oxygen. It may also be the case that loud snoring over a long period of time could contribute to noise-induced hearing loss.

Iron Deficiency

Studies have closely linked sleep apnea to hearing loss. While medical experts aren’t exactly sure why there’s a link, they hypothesize that it’s because sleep apnea reduces blood supply to the sensory hair cells within the inner ear that convert soundwaves into electrical energy, depriving them of oxygen. It may also be the case that loud snoring over a long period of time could contribute to noise-induced hearing loss.

Heavy Drinking

In addition to causing heart disease, high blood pressure and stroke, heavy drinking is associated with damage to the auditory cortex, which increases the amount of time it takes for your brain to process sound. It can also lead to low-frequency hearing loss and balance problems.

Chronic Stress

While we all experience stress from time to time, chronic stress can actually impact your hearing. This is because, during periods of stress, the body diverts oxygen to the muscles to boost your reaction time. If you’re stressed for an ongoing period, the hearing mechanisms within the inner ear can become damaged from lack of oxygen. Consider taking a class at Seed Yoga to practice stress management.

Vaping

Nicotine, whether smoked or vaped, isn’t good for your hearing. Nicotine restricts blood flow to all parts of your body, including your inner ears. But even nicotine-free e-cigarettes can be damaging; they contain a substance called propylene glycol, which is an alcohol-based solvent that has been proven to be harmful to the ears.

For more information about the risk factors of hearing loss or to schedule an appointment with a hearing expert, call the Hearing Center of Lake Charles today.

1 Comment

  • Wilimson

    October 28, 2021

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