We all know how important it is to get exercise and to be socially active. We need to be diverse in our daily and weekly activities to keep igniting our brain cells in different and unique ways. We don’t want to be stagnant. Our brain will stay healthier and our body will thrive with the increased blood flow from the exercise. That is all well and done.

What else is so very important for our health and our hearing?

Sleep. Before we can exercise and enjoy being social, we need rest. We need sleep. Our body must rejuvenate itself. If you have sleep apnea then you realize how exhausted you feel when you are not getting enough rest. You don’t want to exercise and you are in no mental state to want to visit with others.

Not only does sleep apnea rob you of energy and motivation, it also is linked to hearing loss.

What exactly is sleep apnea? If while sleeping a person has 15 or more episodes of either pauses in their breathing or shallow breathing. There are tests that can be done in the home or testing facility to determine if a person has sleep apnea. All 15 or more episodes have to happen within a 60-minute period once the person is completely asleep. If you are having gaps in your breathing, then you are having lapses in your oxygen flow throughout your body. When your oxygen decreases it can have negative effects on your blood flow.

Proper blood flow is imperative for the health of your organs and their ability to function properly. Therefore, if the blood flow is limited or restricted to your ears then it can damage your ears and your hearing.

In 2014, the results of a study was presented at the American Thoracic Society International Conference that confirmed that sleep apnea can cause both high frequency hearing loss and low frequency hearing loss. There were 13,000 people in the sturdy; 52% were women. The average age was 41 years old. All participants had sleep apnea testing before the start of the study; all had standard hearing tests. Of the participants, 29% started with some hearing loss and 10% had sleep apnea. The results revealed that those with sleep apnea had increased hearing loss. About 31% of the participants had ‘high frequency hearing loss.’ A whopping 90% ended up with ‘low frequency hearing loss’ within those who had sleep apnea. Researcher Amit Chopra, MD., conducted this study and the results have prompted more research to be done concerning medicines and treatment options to help ward off hearing loss side effects.

Hearing is related to your health and well-being in so many different aspects. Everyone should have a complete hearing evaluation to thoroughly monitor your health. Have you had yours? Call a qualified hearing health care professional to get yours scheduled today. To Hear Better Is To Live Better!

Roseann B. Kiefer, B.A., BC-HIS, is owner of Lampe and Kiefer Hearing Aid Center, Sebring. This information is not intended to prevent, diagnose, treat or cure your condition. Always talk to your doctor before following any medical advice or starting a diet or exercise program.