Hearing Loss and Sleep

audseoSleep

The uptick in hearing loss has now become a public health concern and rated as one of the top three in the nation asides from cancer and diabetes. Close to 40 million Americans suffer from some form of hearing impairment. Tinnitus (ringing in the ears) has been experienced by over 20 million people in the US in the past year. Hearing loss has a complicated relationship with many other sensory functions and needs for a healthy body and mind. For example, we know that hearing loss negatively impacts our sense of balance and our cognitive abilities. We now also know that sleep is another important biological function that is also affected by hearing loss. Sleep & Hearing Loss Insomnia and poor-quality sleep are not the same, but hearing loss has been shown to be connected to both. A night of healthy sleep has a spectrum of phases to it and one of them is known as Delta in the non-REM (Rapid Eye Movement) phase. In this part of our sleep cycle, the body acknowledges that it is actually in sleep mode, getting what it needs and believed to be instrumental in mood regulation and memory formation. Without experiencing Delta sleep we feel like we haven’t slept at all. Poor sleep quality results in many of the same effects as insomnia. A study of sleep patterns among a group of deaf people revealed a lack of Delta sleep that is necessary for the body to reset itself and feel rested. It showed that in comparison to a control group of normal-hearing people, they often had interrupted sleep by frequently waking up and experiencing less Delta non-REM sleep though the length of time of sleep was for both groups were the same. In another comparative study, published in the Archives of Gerontology and Geriatrics, 45 pre-lingually deaf people displayed symptoms showing a correlation between their hearing condition, insomnia, and depression. About two-thirds were shown to suffer from insomnia as opposed to normal hearing people. Tinnitus is a condition that often manifests as a ringing in the ears but can actually range from a buzz to a hiss to a roar. It is a condition that can be caused by prolonged exposure to loud noises, infection or even hormonal imbalances. One of the effects of tinnitus is a poor quality of sleep which exacerbates an already unhealthy condition for sufferers. Treatment usually includes sound therapy such as the use of “white sound”. A majority of sufferers are war veterans due to their prolonged exposure to harmful noise. Occupational noise-induced hearing loss (OHL) is another source of affliction that many workers in the US have to battle. Tinnitus was a major symptom as was insomnia but higher rates of poor-quality sleep occurred overall regardless of age and exposure. Up to 30 million Americans suffer from work-related hearing impairment and it is touted as the most common complaint of illness due to job hazards. Noise and vibration levels, exposure times and chemicals in the workplace can result in OHL resulting in dizziness, imbalance, and tinnitus. The effects on sleep can range from poor quality to insomnia and attributes to greater fatigue to those inflicted. With OHL, as with many hearing loss conditions, prevention and early detection is of utmost importance. Can hearing aids help? The following is a Study Sample published in 2017 by the US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health: “The sample consisted of 100 patients, 50 with hearing loss and tinnitus, and 50 controls with hearing loss but no tinnitus.” The study concluded that the use of hearing aids helped the participants and considered it a rehabilitative measure. According to the Center of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), “About 28.8 million U.S. adults could benefit from using hearing aids.” But what are some of the things we can do on a daily basis so that our hearing health and our sleep cycles work to our benefit and longevity? Safe hearing practices are important to preventing hearing loss. Be aware of prolonged exposure to high decibel sounds. For example, when you are using your earbuds to listen to music or watch a movie. Stick to the 60/60 rule of volume at 60 percent for 60 minutes. For unexpected noisy environments carrying and using earplugs are preventative and cost-effective. Be vigilant at work and at home so that you can take the necessary precautions to keep your surroundings at a healthy sound level. Last but not least, have your hearing checked immediately if you have any questions or doubts about your auditory health. Atlanta Hearing Doctor Atlanta Hearing Doctor encourages you or someone close to you to give us a call for any further information you might need. Your sustained hearing health is our goal. Having a comprehensive assessment and a proper diagnosis will set you on the path to overall wellbeing and better hearing experiences.

The uptick in hearing loss has now become a public health concern and rated as one of the top three in the nation asides from cancer and diabetes. Close to 40 million Americans suffer from some form of hearing impairment. Tinnitus (ringing in the ears) has been experienced by over 20 million people in the US in the past year. … Read More

In the Loop: Get the Most out of Your Hearing with Hearing Loop Technology

audseoHearing Aid Technology

In the Loop: Get the Most out of Your Hearing with Hearing Loop Technology

Audio Frequency Induction Loop Systems (AFILS) also known as the “Loop” has opened a world of hearing for people that suffer from hearing loss. The technology is gaining fast traction in venues that were otherwise overwhelming for people that lived and worked with ongoing hearing impairment. It allows them into a broader range of locations from the boardroom to the … Read More

September is World Alzheimer’s Month

audseoUncategorized

September is World Alzheimer’s Month

Alzheimer’s disease is a condition that affects a growing and aging population in our nation and an estimated 50 million worldwide. In recent years, Alzheimer’s disease has become an increasing concern due to its devastating effect on the ones we know and love. September marks a worldwide campaign to further inform and educate the public on the condition and empower … Read More

The Benefits of Bluetooth Hearing Aids        

audseoHearing Aid Technology

The Benefits of Bluetooth Hearing Aids        

Figuring out the right hearing aid for your needs can seem daunting, but it doesn’t have to be. To find the right hearing aid for your lifestyle, consider what the advantages of special features are, and whether you could make good use of them in your daily life. One of the features you may be asked to consider is Bluetooth. … Read More

Sensitivity to Sound as We Age

audseoAge-related Hearing Loss, Research

Sensitivity to Sound as We Age

It probably doesn’t surprise you to learn that our hearing changes as we age. In fact, because much hearing loss is noise induced and cumulative, it is the most pronounced hearing issue associated with aging. But our hearing changes in other ways as well. New Canadian research is showing that aging alters our ability to filter out background noise, making … Read More

Coming to Terms with Your Hearing Loss    

Dr. Maria Wynens, Au.D.Family & Relationships, Hearing Loss

Coming to Terms with Your Hearing Loss    

Hearing loss is incredibly common today – around 40% of Americans cope with some degree of hearing loss, or 2 out of every 5 people you know! Even though hearing loss is common, coming to terms with a hearing issue is seldom easy. Hearing issues can bring up intense feelings and have hidden impacts on your life. A great first … Read More

Osteoporosis and Sudden Hearing Loss       

Dr. Maria Wynens, Au.D.Hearing Loss, Research

Osteoporosis and Sudden Hearing Loss       

Hearing loss is commonly associated with aging and noise, but these two aren’t the only causes. The condition can also result from complications of pre-existing health conditions. The relationships between hearing loss and other chronic conditions have traditionally been ignored, but that is changing. One example of this is the current medical research from Korea and Taiwan, which both show a strong … Read More

Hearing Aids Keep You Happy, Healthy, and Wealthy

Dr. Maria Wynens, Au.D.Family & Relationships, Hearing Aids, Lifestyle

Hearing Aids Keep You Happy, Healthy, and Wealthy

Health, wealth and happiness! We are always in pursuit and balance of these notions and rightly so. Let’s keep in mind that our health really lays the foundation for everything we need to pursue what is important in our lives. As we age and accumulate experience, friends, extended family members, and the financial security we work so hard to achieve, … Read More

Comorbidities of Hearing Loss

Dr. Maria Wynens, Au.D.Family & Relationships, Hearing Loss, Lifestyle

Comorbidities of Hearing Loss

When our hearing abilities decline, our relationship with the world changes, which impacts every part of our lives. Comorbidities are medical conditions related to each other or occur simultaneously. When we speak about hearing loss, we think of it as a solitary ailment and not as a possible symptom of other health issues we might have. This view must change, … Read More

How to Prevent Swimmers Ear

Dr. Maria Wynens, Au.D.Lifestyle

How to Prevent Swimmers Ear

The term “swimmer’s ear” encompasses types of ear infections caused by bacteria and is also known as otitis externa. Water that gets trapped in the ear becomes the best place for bacteria to proliferate and is the reason it is commonly called “swimmer’s ear”. However, if we are not careful, we can also get it by mistakenly scratching the lining … Read More