Man with hearing loss lying in bed suffering from insomnia

Sleepless nights aren’t any fun. And when it happens on a regular basis, it’s especially vexing. You toss and turn and maybe stare at the clock (or your phone) and worry about just how fatigued you’ll be the next day. Medical professionals call this kind of chronic sleeplessness “insomnia”. Over time, the effects of persistent insomnia will compound, negatively impacting your general health.

And the health of your hearing, not surprisingly, is part of your overall health. Yup, your hearing can be negatively affected by insomnia! This isn’t generally a cause-and-effect relationship, but that doesn’t mean there’s no connection between hearing loss and insomnia.

Can your hearing be affected by lack of sleep?

How could loss of sleep possibly affect your hearing? There’s a considerable amount of research that indicates insomnia, over a long enough period, can affect your cardiovascular system. Without the nightly regenerative power of sleep, it’s harder for your blood to get everywhere it needs to be.

Insomnia also means an increase in stress and anxiety. Being stressed and anxious aren’t only states of mind, they’re physiological states, too.

So, how does hearing loss play into that? Your ears work because they’re filled with delicate little hairs known as stereocilia. These delicate hairs vibrate when sound occurs and the information gets transmitted to your brain, which then translates those vibrations into sounds.

These little hairs have a difficult time remaining healthy when there are circulatory issues. These hairs can, in some cases, be irreversibly damaged. And once that happens, your hearing will be irrevocably damaged. Permanent hearing loss can be the consequences, and the longer the circulation problems continue, the more significant the damage will be.

Is the reverse true?

If insomnia can impact your hearing health, can hearing loss stop you from sleeping? It’s certainly possible. Hearing loss can make the world really quiet, and some people like a little bit of noise when they try to sleep. For individuals in this category, that amount of silence can make it really difficult to get a quality night’s sleep. Any amount of hearing loss stress (for example, if you’re worried about losing your hearing) can have a similar effect.

So how can you get a quality night’s sleep with hearing loss? Stress on your brain can be decreased by wearing your hearing aids during the day because you won’t be wearing them at night. Following other sleep-health tips can also help.

How to get a good night’s sleep

  • Keep your bedroom for sleeping (mostly): Try to limit the amount of things you utilize your bedroom for. Working in your bedroom isn’t a very good idea.
  • Avoid drinking liquids a couple of hours before you go to bed: Having to get up and go to the bathroom can initiate the “wake up” process in your brain. So, sleeping through the night is much better.
  • Find ways to reduce stress: Get away from work and do something relaxing before bed.
  • Stop drinking caffeine after noon: Even decaf coffee has enough caffeine in it to keep you awake at night if you drink it late enough. This includes soda too.
  • Avoid screens for at least 60 minutes before going to bed: (Even longer if you can!) Screens have a tendency to stimulate your brain
  • Exercise regularly: Your body needs to move, and if you aren’t moving, you may end up going to bed with a bit of excess energy. Getting enough exercise daily will really be helpful.
  • Before you go to bed, refrain from drinking alcohol: Your natural sleep cycle will be disturbed by drinking alcohol before bed.

Take care of your hearing health

You can still control your symptoms even if you have hearing loss along with some insomnia.

If you’re concerned about your hearing, schedule an appointment with us today.

Call Today to Set Up an Appointment

The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.
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