For 34 years, researchers from Boston’s Brigham and Woman’s Hospital studied over 140 thousand women, to discover if there is any relationship between osteoporosis and hearing loss. After analysing the data, they found that, yes, the risk of hearing loss is 40% greater in women with osteoporosis or low bone density. Also, when women have vertebral fractures, they also have that 40% higher risk factor for hearing loss.
But how does that happen?
One theory is that, when bone density loss occurs on a miniscule scale, and the body tries to rebuild or remodel the bones, they may be imperfect. The main damage may be caused by the remodelling of the bones that protect the inner ear, which can alter the path that sound takes from the ear drum to the auditory nerve. This can affect the delicate organs in the middle ear, like the bones leading from the ear drum to the cochlea, and the cochlea itself.
So, then what? Is there a cure for this sort of hearing loss?
The most important takeaway from this discovery is that if someone is diagnosed with osteoporosis, she may also be suffering from undiagnosed hearing loss, as well. Hearing loss, if it is left untreated, can lead to dementia. It can cause someone to withdraw from social situations, which can lead to depression.
The best thing to do is schedule a hearing test. By doing so, you can stave off all of the negative effects of hearing loss. When you schedule your test, your hearing healthcare provider may give you the best news in the world, that there’s not hearing loss! But, if they do discover any kind of hearing loss, they will offer solutions that fit you, your budget and your lifestyle.
By being proactive, you’ll never miss a beat, a sound or a spoken word.