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

Your body and an ecosystem are similar in some ways. In nature, if something happens to the pond, all of the fish and birds suffer the consequences; and all of the animals and plants that rely on the birds will disappear if the birds disappear. We may not recognize it but our body operates on very similar principals. That’s why a large number of illnesses can be connected to something which at first appears so isolated like hearing loss.

In a way, that’s just more evidence of your body’s ecosystem-like interdependence. When something affects your hearing, it might also influence your brain. These conditions are referred to as comorbid, a fancy (and specialized) term that illustrates a connection between two conditions while not necessarily pointing directly at a cause-and-effect connection.

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

Hearing Loss And The Disorders That Are Associated With it

So, let’s assume that you’ve been recognizing the symptoms of hearing loss for the past several months. It’s more difficult to follow conversations in restaurants. Your television’s volume is constantly getting louder. And certain sounds sound so distant. It would be a smart choice at this point to set up an appointment with a hearing professional.

Whether you recognize it or not, your hearing loss is connected to several other health conditions. Comorbidity with hearing loss has been reported with the following health conditions.

  • Depression: a whole range of problems can be caused by social isolation because of hearing loss, many of which are related to your mental health. So it’s not surprising that study after study finds depression and anxiety have very high comorbidity rates with hearing loss.
  • Cardiovascular disease: on occasion hearing loss doesn’t have anything to connect it with cardiovascular conditions. In other cases, cardiovascular problems can make you more vulnerable to hearing loss. The reason for this is that trauma to the blood vessels of the inner ear is one of the first signs of cardiovascular disease. As that trauma escalates, your hearing may suffer as a result.
  • Diabetes: likewise, your overall nervous system can be negatively influenced by diabetes (especially in your extremities). the nerves in the ear are especially likely to be damaged. Hearing loss can be fully caused by this damage. But diabetes-related nerve damage can also make you more prone to hearing loss caused by other factors, often compounding your symptoms.
  • Dementia: neglected hearing loss has been connected to a higher risk of dementia, though it’s uncertain what the base cause is. Many of these cases of dementia and also cognitive decline can be slowed, according to research, by using hearing aids.
  • 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, resulting in dizziness and vertigo. Falls are progressively more dangerous as you age and falls can happen whenever there is a loss of balance

What’s The Answer?

When you stack all of those related health conditions on top of each other, it can seem a bit intimidating. But it’s worthwhile to keep one thing in mind: treating your hearing loss can have enormous positive impacts. Scientists and researchers recognize that if hearing loss is addressed, the risk of dementia significantly lowers although they don’t really know exactly why hearing loss and dementia manifest together to begin with.

So the best course of action, regardless of what comorbid condition you might be worried about, is to get your hearing checked.

Part of an Ecosystem

That’s why more medical professionals are viewing hearing health with fresh eyes. Your ears are being considered as a part of your general health profile instead of being a specific and limited concern. We’re starting to think about the body as an interconnected environment in other words. Hearing loss isn’t always an isolated situation. So it’s significant to pay attention to your health as a whole.

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