All of us have felt anxiety at one point or another. We worry about things like our families, our jobs and our health. If you are a person who is experiencing hearing loss, you might be feeling anxious about that. While a little anxiety is nothing to worry about, frequent high levels of anxiety can negatively impact your health and well-being.
Anxiety and Hearing Loss Connection
A study published in 2018 observed 3,928 adults aged 65 and older. It examined how both hearing loss and vision loss affected anxiety symptoms. Participants with hearing loss reported increased anxiety, but not those with vision loss. A potential reason why is that people generally feel more comfortable with the idea of needing glasses as opposed to hearing aids.
Another study of adults aged 76 to 85, found participants with mild hearing loss had a 32% higher risk of anxiety. For those with moderate to severe hearing loss, the number jumped to 59%. The worse the hearing loss became the more anxiety participants experienced.
Common Anxiety Symptoms
Everyone experiences anxiety differently. Some common symptoms include:
- Feeling lightheaded or dizzy
- Racing heart
- Sweating or feeling flushed
- Feeling like you can’t breathe or are hyperventilating
- Muscle aches
- Weakness in arms and legs
- Feeling of impending dread or doom
You might also find yourself worrying excessively. These worries could be hearing-related such as:
- What if my hearing gets worse?
- What if I can’t follow an important conversation at work?
- What if I misunderstand someone and embarrass myself?
Tinnitus and Dizziness
Tinnitus and dizziness are two symptoms that can sometimes coexist with hearing loss. Experiencing either can make anxiety symptoms more severe.
People with untreated hearing loss are sometimes prone to isolation. They start to avoid activities they once enjoyed, like going to the movies or seeing Broadway in Austin at Bass Concert Hall. Anxiety can also make people want to isolate and avoid situations where they feel their symptoms might act up.
If your anxiety is related to untreated hearing loss or tinnitus, book an appointment with a hearing professional. They can help assess your needs and manage your symptoms, which will likely go a long way to lessening your anxiety. If you find that you are still experiencing anxiety symptoms even with proper hearing loss treatment, you may want to get additional help.
Talking to a mental health professional can be extremely helpful. They can offer coping techniques and calming exercises to help manage your anxiety. In certain instances, medication may be prescribed to lessen your symptoms.
If you are feeling anxious, don’t hesitate to reach out for help. Plenty of treatment options exist to help ease your symptoms and give you back control of your life.
To learn more or to schedule an appointment with a hearing professional, contact Victory Hearing & Balance Center today.