You might assume that people with hearing loss would potentially sleep better than those without since they’d be less likely to wake up from various noises. However, research has shown that hearing loss might actually put you at a greater risk of insomnia.
Hearing Loss Increases Problems Sleeping
A study published in 2011 administered hearing tests to 298 participants who had been exposed to harmful noises at work. These same participants also answered questions about their quality of sleep. Researchers found that hearing loss contributed to greater levels of insomnia than those experienced by participants without hearing problems.
While the study didn’t mention particular reasons why hearing loss contributed to higher rates of insomnia, several possibilities exist.
- Hearing loss can cause higher levels of stress, which in turn can make it harder to both fall and stay asleep.
- Tinnitus (ringing in the ears) is common in people with hearing loss. These phantom sounds can be distracting and prevent sufferers from being able to fall asleep.
- Higher levels of depression have also been linked with hearing loss. Like stress and anxiety, depression can disrupt a person’s sleep cycle and/or lead to lower quality sleep.
Can Hearing Aids Improve Your Sleep?
Though hearing aids obviously can’t improve sleep for someone who doesn’t have hearing loss, they may aid in getting a better night’s rest for those that do. Not because of anything they do during sleep (your hearing aids should be taken out before going to bed), but because they help with the problems keeping you up in the first place.
Hearing aids can help lower your levels of anxiety, stress and depression and can help manage symptoms of tinnitus in some people as well.
Other Benefits of Hearing Aids
In addition to potentially improving your sleep, hearing aids offer a host of other benefits, including:
- Making it easier to follow conversations in places with background noise, like King’s Kitchen & Bar.
- Increasing your confidence in your ability to socialize at work or with friends
- Strengthening your relationships by improving your communication
- Lowering your risk of balance issues or injuries from fall
- Lowering your risk of cognitive decline and dementia
Don’t let hearing loss negatively interfere with any aspect of your life. Contact the experts at Gulf Coast Audiology today to schedule an appointment.