How Diabetes Raises Your Risk of Hearing Loss

Diabetic woman using a flash glucose monitor.

Genetic predisposition, aging, and extended exposure to loud noise are all common factors that can contribute to hearing loss. However, you might find it interesting to understand the connection between diabetes and hearing impairment. Let’s dig a little bit deeper into that.

How is your risk of experiencing hearing loss increased by diabetes?

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. And if you’re dealing with diabetes, you’re two times as likely to experience hearing loss. 133 million Americans are pre-diabetic and even they have a 30% higher risk of experiencing hearing loss than individuals whose blood sugar is normal.

Diabetes can cause nerve damage across various bodily regions, including the hands, feet, eyes, kidneys, and ears. The deterioration of the small blood vessels inside of your ears can be accelerated by high 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. Both situations can contribute to hearing loss.

The lack of diabetes management induces persistent high blood pressure, causing damage to the heart, blood vessels, kidneys, nerves, and eyes.

Signs you might have hearing loss

Hearing loss frequently happens gradually and can go undetected if you aren’t actively paying attention. In many instances, friends and co-workers may notice the problem before you become aware of it.

Some suggestive signs of hearing loss include:

  • Having a difficult time hearing in noisy places
  • Trouble hearing on the phone
  • Perceiving others as mumbling
  • Constantly needing people to repeat what they said
  • Keeping the TV volume really loud

It’s essential to contact us for a consultation if you observe any of these signs or if somebody points out your hearing changes. After performing a hearing test, we will establish a baseline for future visits and help you with any problems you might be having with balance.

Be proactive if your managing diabetes

We encourage anyone who has diabetes to get a yearly hearing test.

Maintain your blood sugar levels within the desired range.

Utilize ear protection and steer clear of overly loud situations.

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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