Living with Diabetes? 4 Tips to Protect your Hearing
Hearing News • November, 14 2018
“People with Diabetes are twice as likely to develop hearing loss as those who do not.”
Rory Thompson, Hearing Care Consultant
Today is World Diabetes Day. In recent years the number of people living with Diabetes has almost doubled to 3.7million people. For those who live daily with this condition, you are fully aware of the damage uncontrolled blood sugar has on your body and realise just how vital it is to take whatever measures you can to protect your health.
Our ears are very sensitive, comprising of many small parts, each with a special function. If all parts are not working together, our ears will not function as they should. Diabetes can lead to nerve damage and microvascular disease. This can have an impact on the small blood vessels and tiny nerve endings in the ear which can affect our ability to hear.
People with Diabetes are twice as likely to develop hearing loss as those who do not. With this in mind, here are 4 tips to help protect your hearing:
A healthy diet helps to prevent Diabetes, but for those who already have Diabetes, it can help to prevent further hearing loss. It is important to understand that when hearing is damaged it cannot be repaired, which is quite unlike other parts of the body. Often when we get our blood levels under control, we can undo some of the damage we have done to our organs but with our ears, once the tiny hair-like nerves die in our inner ear, they cannot be repaired. These tiny nerves in our ear help us hear sound and once they are damaged so is our ability to pick up sound.
As we know exercise is vital in the management of diabetes. Exercise leads to better blood circulation throughout our bodies. Again, unlike other parts of the body that can repair themselves in time, if the blood supply is cut off from our ears, the cells automatically die and cannot be repaired resulting in loss to our hearing. A key tip to managing this is to keep moving in terms of exercise so that our ears are not cut off from the blood supply.
Limit Exposure to Loud Noises
Over Exposure to loud noise is something which affects everyone’s hearing but for those with Diabetes it can have an even greater affect. To help prevent further hearing loss, wear headphones, earmuffs or earplugs when exposed to loud noises. Move away from loud noise as often as you can. Keep headphones volume down to 60% and only use them for short periods of time.
Have Regular Hearing Tests!
Regular Hearing Tests are important for everyone but if you suffer from Diabetes, the sooner you have a hearing test the better for your overall hearing.