Heart disease is a serious medical condition that is closely intertwined with a number of other diseases and illnesses, including hearing loss. Understanding the cause of this condition as well as your treatment options can ensure you keep your heart and ears safe.
What Is Heart Disease?
Heart disease is the leading cause of death for men and women in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In fact, one person dies every 36 seconds from cardiovascular disease. According to Dr. Sergei Kochkin, Ph.D., the former executive director of the Better Hearing Institute, “An alarming number of Americans don’t understand how serious the threat of heart disease is to them personally, or how closely intertwined it is with other health conditions.”
Heart disease is often caused by blood vessel damage from high cholesterol, arteriosclerosis and high blood pressure. Ruptures, spasms and blockages of major blood vessels can lead to a heart attack or stroke.
Hearing Loss Connection
Within the inner ear are delicate hair cells. These cells are responsible for converting soundwaves into electric impulses, which are sent to the brain through the auditory nerve to be interpreted as sound.
These hair cells require good circulation in order to work properly. If they are deprived of oxygen, the hairs can become damaged or die. This leads to permanent sensorineural hearing loss.
A 2010 study published in the American Journal of Audiology reviewed research on the influence of cardiovascular health on the function of the peripheral and central auditory systems published over the last 60 years. The most significant relationship they discovered was between improved cardiovascular health and improvements in the auditory systems of older adults.
Association with Strokes
A stroke occurs when the brain is deprived of oxygen. If this occurs in the area of the brain responsible for hearing and balance, it can lead to hearing loss. If a stroke occurs in the temporal lobe of the brain, this can lead to issues recognizing spoken words or sounds; some may even think that normal sounds seem strange.
Understanding the impact a good heart health has on your entire body can help you make the changes you need to stay healthy. To learn more about hearing loss or to schedule an appointment with an audiologist, contact Sharp Hearing today.