In these very trying times, the question of the impact of stress on the body is often a topic of conversation. The Mayo Clinic discusses the effect that stress symptoms may have on your overall health, often without you realizing that stress might be the culprit.
“You may think illness is to blame for that irritating headache, your frequent insomnia or your decreased productivity at work. But stress may actually be the cause. Indeed, stress symptoms can affect your body, your thoughts and feelings, and your behavior. Being able to recognize common stress symptoms can help you manage them. Stress that’s left unchecked can contribute to many health problems, such as high blood pressure, heart disease, obesity and diabetes.”
However, some conditions may be cyclic, with one causing the other to worsen. The questions posed by this article are, does stress cause hearing loss, or does hearing loss cause stress? It’s quite possible that the answer to both questions is, yes.
Can Stress Cause Hearing Loss?
A study published in The International Journal of Tinnitus examined forty patients hospitalized with sudden hearing loss and tinnitus and compared them to a control group of inpatients of an ear-nose-throat ward. They found a connection between increased levels of stress and the development of sudden hearing loss accompanied by tinnitus.
Stress is a normal part of life. But if left unmanaged, stress can lead to emotional, psychological, and even physical problems, including heart disease and high blood pressure to name just a few. Both heart disease and high blood pressure can impact the flow of blood to the brain. This interruption of the blood flow to the inner ear or parts of the brain that control hearing is what can ultimately lead to hearing loss.
Can Hearing Loss Cause Stress?
According to The Better Hearing Institute, many people are aware that their hearing has deteriorated but are reluctant to seek help. Perhaps they don’t want to acknowledge the problem, are embarrassed by what they see as a weakness, or believe that they can “get by” without using a hearing aid. And, unfortunately, too many wait years, even decades, to address the effects of hearing loss before getting treatment.
But time and again, research demonstrates the considerable effects of hearing loss on development as well as negative social, psychological, cognitive, and health effects of untreated hearing loss. Studies have linked untreated hearing loss to many things, anger, depression, loneliness, impaired memory, and finally, stress.
We may not be able to help you to eliminate much on your list of things in your life that are causing you stress. But if untreated hearing loss is on that list, we can help.