Man with hearing loss lying in bed suffering from insomnia

It’s not fun when you can’t sleep at night. And when it occurs on a regular basis, it’s particularly vexing. You toss and turn and maybe stare at the clock (or your phone) and stress about just how fatigued you’ll be the next day. Medical professionals call this type of persistent sleeplessness “insomnia”. With insomnia, the drawbacks of not sleeping will then begin to add up and can, after a while, have a negative affect on your overall health.

And, maybe not surprisingly, “your overall health” includes the health of your hearing. Yup, your hearing can be negatively impacted by insomnia! This isn’t exactly a cause-and-effect relationship, but that doesn’t mean there’s no connection between hearing loss and insomnia.

Can lack of sleep affect your hearing?

What could the connection between hearing loss and sleep be? According to substantial research, your cardiovascular system can be influenced by insomnia over a long time period. It becomes more difficult for your blood to flow into all of the extremities of your body when you aren’t getting the restorative power of a good night’s sleep.

Insomnia also means an increase in anxiety and stress. Feeling anxious and stressed will affect you in physiological ways as well as mentally.

So how is that connected to hearing loss? Your ears work because they’re filled with delicate little hairs called stereocilia. When sound waves vibrate these tiny hairs, signals are sent to your brain which translates these signals into sound.

When your circulatory system isn’t functioning properly, these hairs have a hard time remaining healthy. These hairs can, in some instances, be permanently damaged. And once that happens, your hearing will be permanently damaged. Permanent hearing loss can be the result, and the longer the circulation problems continue, the more significant the damage will be.

Is the reverse true?

If insomnia can affect your hearing health, can hearing loss stop you from getting a good night’s sleep? Yes, it can! Many people favor a little background noise when they try to sleep and hearing loss can make your environment very quiet. This means that the quiet of hearing loss can sometimes prevent normal sleeping. Another way that hearing loss might cost you some sleep is if you find yourself stressed about losing your hearing.

So how can you get a quality night’s sleep with hearing loss? Stress on your brain can be reduced by wearing your hearing aids every day because you won’t be wearing them while you sleep. Adhering to other sleep-health tips can also be helpful.

Some tips for a good night’s sleep

  • Before you go to bed, refrain from drinking alcohol: This will simply disrupt your natural sleep cycle.
  • Get some 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.
  • Try to avoid drinking liquids a couple of hours before you go to bed: Each time you need to get up and go to the bathroom, you begin the wake up process. So, sleeping through the night is better.
  • Try not to use your bedroom for other activities other than sleeping: Try to limit the amount of things you utilize your bedroom for. For instance, don’t do work in your bedroom.
  • Try to de-stress as much as possible: It might not be possible to eliminate every stressor from your life, but giving yourself time to de-stress is critical. Do something relaxing before you go to bed.
  • For at least an hour, avoid looking at screens: (Really, the longer the better.) Screens have a tendency to stimulate your brain
  • Quit drinking caffeine after midday: Even if you drink decaf, it still has enough caffeine to give you trouble sleeping. Soda also falls into this category.

Care for your hearing health

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

If you’re concerned about your hearing, set up an appointment with us today.

Call Today to Set Up an Appointment

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.
Why wait? You don't have to live with hearing loss. Call Us Today