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 familiar factors that can contribute to hearing loss. But the connection between hearing loss and diabetes is not as well known. Let’s dig a little bit deeper into that.

How does diabetes raise 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. Hearing loss is two times as prevalent in people with diabetes compared to individuals who don’t have the condition. 133 million Americans are pre-diabetic and even they have a 30% higher risk of experiencing hearing loss than people whose blood sugar is normal.

Diabetes can cause nerve damage across a variety of bodily regions, including the hands, feet, eyes, kidneys, and ears. The degeneration of the small blood vessels inside of your ears can be increased by elevated blood sugar levels. And on the other end of the spectrum, the transmission of nerve signals from the inner ear can be disrupted by low blood sugar. Worsened hearing loss can be the outcome of both scenarios.

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

Signs you may have hearing loss

If you aren’t actively monitoring the condition of your hearing, hearing loss can slowly sneak up on you. In many cases, friends and co-workers may detect the problem before you become aware of it.

Here are a few signs of hearing loss:

  • Difficulty hearing on the phone
  • Constantly needing people to repeat what they said
  • Struggling in noisy establishments
  • Perceiving others as mumbling
  • Always needing to crank the volume up on your devices and TV

It’s essential to contact us for a consultation if you observe any of these signs or if somebody points out your hearing changes. After performing a hearing test, we will establish a baseline for future visits and help you with any issues you may be having with balance.

Be proactive if you have diabetes

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

Maintain control of your blood sugar levels.

Avoid loud noises and protect 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.

Stop struggling to hear conversations. Come see us today. Call or Text