Illini Hearing - Champaign and Mahomet, IL

Diabetic woman using a flash glucose monitor.

You may be acquainted with the various factors contributing to hearing loss, including 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 well known. Allow us to elaborate.

How does diabetes raise your risk of hearing loss?

The prevalence of diabetes increases as you get older, and 37 million people, or 9% of the United States population, cope with this condition according to the CDC. Hearing loss is twice as prevalent in individuals with diabetes compared to those without the condition. 133 million Americans are pre-diabetic and even they have a 30% higher risk of developing hearing loss than people whose blood sugar is normal.

A variety of body areas can be impacted by diabetes: kidneys, hands, feet, eyes, and even ears. The degeneration of the small blood vessels inside of your ears can be accelerated by elevated blood sugar levels. And on the other end of the spectrum, the transmission of nerve signals from the inner ear can be interrupted by low blood sugar. 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 resulting from unchecked diabetes.

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

Hearing loss often occurs gradually and can go undetected if you aren’t actively paying attention. In many situations, friends and colleagues might notice the problem before you become aware of it.

Some indicative signs of hearing loss include:

  • Keeping the TV volume at a high level
  • Frequently asking others to repeat themselves
  • Perceiving others as mumbling
  • Struggling in loud restaurants
  • Difficulty following phone conversations

It’s important to call us for a consultation if you observe any of these signs or if somebody points out your hearing changes. After carrying out 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 your navigating diabetes

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

Maintain your blood sugar levels within the desired range.

Utilize ear protection and steer clear of overly loud settings.

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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.
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