It hits without warning. Someone says something or does something. You explode.
Hearing was probably the last thing on your mind, yet, unfortunately there is a connection to hearing. Hint: It’s not the yelling.
How Arguments May Affect Your Hearing
According to the CDC, over 70 million adults in the US have high blood pressure. That’s nearly 30% of us. On top of that, another 30% have pre-hypertension meaning they are at risk of developing high blood pressure. In tense moments, like an argument, this at-risk group is likely well over a healthy level.
High blood pressure does a number of bad things to your body. According to the Mayo Clinic, it’s a slow killer. It damages and narrows the arteries that take oxygen and nutrients to your cells. Circulation becomes a laborious task for the heart. It has to work harder to pump blood where it needs to go.
If your blood pressure is above normal levels, you’re at increased risk of:
- Organ failure
- Heart attack
The list goes on.
You’re also at risk for hearing loss. In a 2013 study, researchers examined 274 people between 45 and 64. They found that those with high blood pressure were significantly more likely to have hearing loss.
Yet another study found that people with high blood pressure who also have severe hearing loss are 150% more likely to have a stroke within 2 years than people with just high blood pressure.
Why High Blood Pressure Is Such a Risk Factor
While exact cause and effect is not clear, these results aren’t surprising. The intricate mechanisms in your inner ear are very delicate. If high blood pressure is reducing blood flow to your ears or damaging the blood vessels your hearing will become impaired. Fatty plaque build-up can also be a contributing factor. Unlike other parts of the body, these cells do not heal or regenerate.
There’s Good News
There’s a silver lining to all of this: there are many ways to lower your blood pressure and reduce the risk of hearing loss and other health issues.
Consider reading self-help books, trying meditation, talking to a counselor or learning other methods to stay calm and centered when things heat up or getting to those root causes for the angry outbursts. Often focusing beyond the specific situation and on the greater context can help you stay grounded.
Also consider getting a hearing test and talk to a hearing specialist about your options. A massive 2007 survey by Cochlear Americas revealed that 70% of people who wear their hearing aids say “it’s improved my relationships”.
Be happier and live healthier with your hearing restored. Get a hearing test, wear your hearing aids or speak with a hearing specialist about your hearing options.