COVID-19 has a few unusual symptoms such as dampening your sense of smell and taste. We know that one of the first signs is loss of the sense of smell. But your sense of smell and taste aren’t the only sense impacted by COVID-19. New studies are pointing to an uncommon, but longer-term issue: long lasting sensorineural hearing loss.
How is Hearing Loss Caused by COVID-19?
Scientists are discovering more about COVID-19 each day. But we’re truly in the dark in a lot of ways. 2019 is when the virus was first discovered. Normally, scientists work for years, even decades, to completely identify a new pathogen. One thing we do know about COVID is that it impacts different individuals in many different ways (making it a particularly difficult and challenging problem).
There are numerous symptoms you can experience. And irreversible hearing loss can be one of them. Why this occurs is still unknown. The virus could be triggering a reaction known as “cellular stress”. According to this theory, COVID places so much strain on your body that some cells (such as those responsible for hearing) start to break down. But your body’s own immune response may also be responsible for this type of hearing loss. On occasion, your immune system can go into overdrive and ends up contributing to significant damage to your body.
Also, when other COVID symptoms are almost gone, this hearing loss can still show up. The actual timing isn’t precisely known. We are also clueless why it’s more or less likely to happen.
Can This Hearing Loss be Treated?
Permanent sensorineural hearing loss is possible with COVID-19. There may be some treatment possibilities depending on certain variables. It’s already been observed that early steroid treatments appear to help protect your hearing from additional damage. It’s essential to see a doctor as soon as possible if you experience sudden hearing loss.
In either case, once you’ve totally recovered from your COVID-19 situation, it may be a smart move to visit us and have a hearing test.
But it’s worth noting that there are a few qualifiers to all of this. First and foremost, hearing loss does seem to be a fairly uncommon symptom of COVID. We don’t know yet how prevalent this particular symptom is yet. But as scientists discover more about COVID-19 the science will adjust.
Can COVID Induced Hearing Loss be Prevented?
If you have sudden changes in your hearing and you have COVID-19 get in touch with your doctor and make an appointment for a hearing exam with us. An early response might help reduce long-term hearing loss.
Try to stay healthy: Safeguarding yourself from getting COVID-19 is the best way to avoid this kind of hearing loss. This means sticking with guidelines regarding social gatherings, physical distancing, and wearing a mask.
While this particular symptom is uncommon, it still happens. And you will be a lot better off with more knowledge about hearing loss and COIVID. If you think you’ve already suffered hearing damage, it’s probably a good idea to come in and get tested.