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No Bones About It: Osteoporosis May Nearly Double Risk of Sudden Hearing Loss

What does osteoporosis, a potentially debilitating disease affecting some 10 million Americans and 2 million Canadians, have in common with conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, chronic kidney disease, dementia, and other selected conditions? It can go hand in hand with hearing loss. More specifically, at least one study links osteoporosis to a nearly doubled risk of sudden sensorineural hearing loss, a disease that can touch people of all ages around the globe but primarily affects those in their 50s and 60s. ... Read more

Is Weight Connected to Hearing Loss?

Studies about weight often concern its relation to overall health. Common connections include weight and the risk for or prevalence of heart disease, diabetes, and sleep apnea, to name a few. One topic that doesn’t get as much attention is the connection between weight and risk for hearing loss. But is there a connection? To understand how weight affects hearing, you need to know about something tiny but important in your inner ear: the hair cell. The Hair Cell Your brain doesn’t ... Read more

How Are Smoking and Hearing Loss Related?

The connection between smoking and heart disease, cancer, and respiratory problems gets all the attention, but the effects of smoking on hearing have long been known. If you’re one of the 40 million U.S. adults who smokes cigarettes — or someone who lives with a smoker — read on to find out how smoking is linked to hearing loss. Some Facts How does smoking affect hearing? Compared to nonsmokers, smokers have a 70% greater chance of developing hearing loss. Nonsmokers are twice as ... Read more

Are Balance Problems Related to Hearing Loss?

It’s common for people with hearing loss to have balance issues, and vice versa. This phenomenon might even affect you or a loved one. Do they occur together as a coincidence, or are hearing and balance actually related? It turns out the answer is, “It depends.” Let’s look at some basics first.   The Inner Ear The inner ear is also known as the bony labyrinth, and it consists of both the cochlea and the vestibular system. The cochlea (hearing): The cochlea is where sound signals ... Read more

Eyes and Ears: More in Common Than You Think!

4 Reasons to Keep Your Hearing and Vision in Check We all know that eyes and ears play a huge role in helping people — and animals, too! — experience life’s adventures. Seeing or hearing the people, places, and moments that matter can make for wonderful, lasting memories. But did you know that seeing and hearing have more in common than just their rock-star status? Here are four reasons to make regular checkups for hearing and vision an important part of your ... Read more

What Does Hypertension Have to Do With Hearing? Plenty!

We’ve got a tip for your wellness checklist: Keeping your blood pressure down may help keep your hearing up! Both hearing loss and hypertension, or high blood pressure, impact millions of people around the world, but few realize that these two chronic conditions might go hand in hand. For your best health, here are three important things to know: Hypertension and Hearing Loss Are Connected Like hearing loss, which affects an estimated 466 million people worldwide, hypertension is a serious public-health challenge that can ... Read more

Diabetes & Hearing Loss: What’s the Deal?

Are hearing impairment and diabetes connected? More than you might think. Hearing loss — which affects an estimated one of every five Americans — is twice as common among people living with diabetes, making healthy habits and regular hearing checkups all the more important for overall wellness. Some 30 million people in the U.S. have diabetes, a chronic metabolic disease that isn’t yet curable but can be managed. Controlling blood sugar is crucial to managing the condition, which, if uncontrolled, can lead ... Read more

Dementia a Real Risk With Hearing Loss

If you think of hearing loss as just an inconsequential part of getting older, you’re not alone. The truth is, however, that the condition can strike even the youngest among us — more than one in 1,000 babies screened has some form of hearing impairment, per Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data — and it can trigger other health problems, too. Take cognitive decline, for example, which can lead to Alzheimer’s disease or another form of dementia. Research has ... Read more

Decline in Brain Function Linked to Untreated Hearing Loss

June is Alzheimer’s Awareness Month: Although the brain naturally becomes smaller as humans age, findings from a study by Johns Hopkins and the National Institute on Aging have linked accelerated brain tissue atrophy to older individuals with at least a 25-dB hearing loss. The results of this study are similar to those of past studies that reported marked differences in the brain structures of both humans and animals with a measurable hearing loss. The findings add to a growing list of health ... Read more