Five Connections Between Hearing and Heart Health
(Thanks to the Better Hearing Institute (BHI) for this week’s blog content – Part 2 of 2).
September 29 may have been the official World Heart Day, but maintaining healthy hearing and a healthy heart are important the other 364 days of the year, as well. The following are five good reasons why ignoring hearing loss poses a threat to your cardiovascular health:
- Six decades of research points to a heart-hearing health link. A comparative review of more than 60 years of research found a correlation between cardiovascular and hearing health. Specifically, the study authors concluded that the negative influence of impaired cardiovascular health on both the peripheral and central auditory system—and the potential positive influence of improved cardiovascular health on these same systems—have been found through a sizable body of research.
- The ear may be a window to the heart. Some experts find the evidence showing a link between cardiovascular and hearing health so compelling that they say the ear may be a window to the heart. They encourage collaboration between hearing care providers, cardiologists, and other healthcare professionals. Some even call on hearing care professionals to include cardiovascular health in patient case history and to measure their patients’ blood pressure.
- The same lifestyle behaviors that affect the heart impact hearing. More evidence of the interconnectedness between cardiovascular and hearing health is found in three studies on modifiable behaviors. One found that a higher level of physical activity is associated with lower risk of hearing loss in women. Another revealed that smokers and passive smokers are more likely to suffer hearing loss. And a third found that regular fish consumption and higher intake of long-chain omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids are associated with lower risk of hearing loss in women. Coincidence? Or does it all come back to blood flow to the inner ear? Research is ongoing.
- Addressing hearing loss improves quality of life, helps reduce stress. Eight out of 10 hearing aid users say they’re satisfied with the changes that have occurred in their lives due to their hearing aids. Many say they see improvements in their life overall, in interpersonal relationships, and that they experience reduced anger and frustration, and enhanced emotional stability.
- Today’s hearing aids are better than ever and virtually invisible. State-of-the-art, sleek, sophisticated, and virtually invisible, today’s hearing aids combine high-performance technology and style with durability and ease-of-use. They’re a high-tech tool to help people stay socially, physically, and cognitively active. The options are so varied there’s an attractive solution for just about anyone.
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