Man talking with healthcare provider about his diabetes and hearing loss.

Your body is similar to an ecosystem. In nature, all of the birds and fish will suffer if something goes wrong with the pond; and all of the plants and animals that depend on the birds will disappear if the birds disappear. The human body, commonly unbeknownst to us, works on very comparable principles of interconnection. That’s the reason why something which seems to be isolated, such as hearing loss, can be connected to a wide variety of other ailments and diseases.

In a sense, that’s just more proof of your body’s ecosystem-like interdependence. Your brain may also be impacted if something affects your hearing. These conditions are known as comorbid, a term that is specialized and indicates when two conditions have an affect on each other but don’t necessarily have a cause and effect connection.

We can find out a lot regarding our bodies’ ecosystem by understanding conditions that are comorbid with hearing loss.

Hearing Loss And The Disorders That Are Connected to it

So, let’s assume that you’ve been recognizing the symptoms of hearing loss for the past couple of months. It’s harder to follow along with conversations in restaurants. You’ve been cranking up the volume on your television. And certain sounds just feel a bit further away. It would be a smart choice at this point to set up an appointment with a hearing professional.

Your hearing loss is connected to a number of health conditions whether you recognize it or not. Some of the health problems that have documented comorbidity with hearing loss include:

  • Cardiovascular disease: sometimes hearing loss has nothing to do with cardiovascular disease. In other cases, cardiovascular problems can make you more susceptible to hearing loss. The explanation for this is that trauma to the blood vessels of the inner ear is one of the first symptoms of cardiovascular disease. As that trauma gets worse, your hearing could suffer as a result.
  • Dementia: neglected hearing loss has been connected to a higher chance of dementia, although the root cause of that relationship is unclear. Research suggests that using a hearing aid can help slow cognitive decline and decrease many of these dementia risks.
  • Depression: a whole range of concerns can be the result of social isolation because of hearing loss, many of which are related to your mental health. So depression and anxiety, not surprisingly, have been found in several studies, to have a high rate of comorbidity with hearing loss.
  • Vertigo and falls: your inner ear is your main tool for balance. There are some forms of hearing loss that can play havoc with your inner ear, leading to dizziness and vertigo. Falls are more and more dangerous as you age and falls can happen whenever there is a loss of balance
  • Diabetes: likewise, your entire nervous system can be influenced in a negative way by diabetes (specifically in your extremities). one of the areas particularly likely to be harmed are the nerves in the ear. This damage can cause loss of hearing by itself. But diabetes-related nerve damage can also make you more vulnerable to hearing loss caused by other issues, often adding to your symptoms.

Is There Anything That You Can do?

When you add all of those connected health conditions added together, it can seem a bit scary. But one thing should be kept in mind: tremendous positive impact can be gained by managing your hearing loss. Scientists and researchers recognize that if hearing loss is managed, the risk of dementia significantly lowers even though they don’t really know precisely why hearing loss and dementia show up together in the first place.

So regardless of what your comorbid condition may be, the best course of action is to get your hearing checked.

Part of an Ecosystem

That’s why more health care specialists are viewing hearing health with fresh eyes. Instead of being a rather limited and specific area of concern, your ears are viewed as closely connected to your overall wellness. We’re beginning to consider the body as an interrelated environment in other words. Hearing loss doesn’t always happen in isolation. So it’s more significant than ever that we pay attention to the totality, not to the proverbial pond or the birds in isolation, but to your health as a whole.

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