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Man with hearing loss lying in bed suffering from insomnia

It’s not fun when you can’t sleep at night. And when it happens on a regular basis, it’s especially vexing. You toss and turn and probably stare at the clock (or your phone) and worry about just how fatigued you’ll be the next day. When these types of sleepless nights routinely occur, medical professionals tend to use the label “insomnia”. With insomnia, the downsides of not sleeping will then begin to add up and can, over time, have a negative affect on your general health.

And, maybe not surprisingly, “your overall health” includes the health of your hearing. Yup, your hearing can be negatively affected by insomnia! Though the relationship between hearing loss and insomnia might not be a cause-and-effect scenario, there’s still a link there.

Can your hearing be impacted by lack of sleep?

How could loss of sleep possibly affect your hearing? According to significant research, your cardiovascular system can be affected by insomnia over a long period of time. Without the nightly renewing power of sleep, it’s more difficult for your blood to get everywhere it needs to be.

Stress and anxiety also increase when you have insomnia. Feeling anxious and stressed will impact you in physiological ways as well as mentally.

So, how does hearing loss play into that? There are little hairs inside of your ears called stereocilia. These fragile hairs vibrate when sound occurs and the information gets sent to your brain, which then translates those vibrations into sounds.

These tiny hairs have a difficult time staying healthy when there are circulatory problems. In some circumstances, poor circulation can damage these hairs, permanently. Damage of this type is permanent. This can result in permanent hearing loss, especially the longer it persists.

Is the opposite true?

Is it possible for hearing loss to make you lose sleep? Yes, it can! Many people favor a little background sound when they try to sleep and hearing loss can make your environment really quiet. For people in this category, that amount of quiet can make it really difficult to get a quality night’s sleep. Another way that hearing loss might cost you some sleep is if you find yourself stressed about losing your hearing.

If you have hearing loss, what can you do to get a quality night’s sleep? Stress on your brain can be decreased by wearing your hearing aids during the day because you won’t be wearing them while you sleep. It can also help if you follow some other sleep-health tips.

How to get a quality night’s sleep

  • For at least a couple of hours before bed, try to avoid liquids: Each time you need to get up and go to the bathroom, you start the wake up process. It’s much better to sleep right through the night.
  • Exercise regularly: You could go to bed with some excess energy if you don’t get enough exercise. Getting enough exercise every day can be really helpful.
  • Find ways to relieve stress: Get away from work and do something soothing before bed.
  • Try not to utilize your bedroom for other activities besides sleeping: Your bedroom is for sleeping in, so try to keep it that way. Working in your bedroom isn’t a great idea.
  • Don’t drink caffeine after lunch.: Even if you drink decaf, it still has enough caffeine to give you trouble sleeping. This includes soda also.
  • Before you go to bed, refrain from drinking alcohol: This will simply interrupt your natural sleep cycle.
  • For at least 60 minutes, abstain from looking at screens: (Actually, the longer the better.) Your brain tends to be activated by looking at screens.

Take care of your hearing health

Even if you have experienced some insomnia-associated symptoms before, and have some hearing loss, your symptoms can still be controlled.

If you’re worried about your hearing, make an appointment with us today.

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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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