Woman protects her hearing health by wearing a mask.

COVID-19 has a few unusual symptoms such as dampening your sense of taste and smell. We recognize that one of the first signs is loss of smell. But COVID-19 impacts more than just your sense of smell and taste. New studies are uncovering an unusual, but longer-term problem: irreversible sensorineural hearing loss.

How is Hearing Loss Triggered by COVID-19?

Every day scientists are discovering more with regards to COVID-19. But there’s still a great deal we don’t know. The virus itself was only first discovered in late 2019. Normally, scientists work for years, if not decades, to thoroughly describe a new pathogen. And COVIC-19 can be particularly challenging because it effects different individuals in different ways.

You could experience a wide range of symptoms. And irreversible hearing loss is sometimes one of them. Why this occurs is still not evident. The virus could be creating a response known as “cellular stress”. Some cells (like the cells in your ear) will start to breakdown, according to this hypothesis, because the virus puts so much strain on the body. But this type of hearing loss may also be a result of your body’s own immune reaction. Significant damage can be done to your body when your immune system overcompensates.

Also, when other COVID symptoms are almost gone, this hearing loss can still show up. Again, we’re not quite sure why this happens. We also have no clue why it’s more or less likely to happen.

Can This Hearing Loss be Managed?

Permanent sensorineural hearing loss is possible as a result of COVID-19. Needless to say, there are many variables, and there are some treatments, also. It’s already been discovered that early steroid treatments seem to help protect your hearing from added damage. If you are affected by sudden loss of hearing, you should see a doctor.

Getting a hearing exam after your COVID has passed is always a good idea.

There are a few qualifiers to all of this that are worth pointing out. First of all, hearing loss does appear to be a relatively uncommon symptom of COVID. Right now, we’re not sure how common this symptom is. But as scientists discover more about COVID-19 the science will adjust.

Can You Avoid COVID-Induced Hearing Loss?

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 examination with us. An early response might help reduce lasting hearing loss.

Try to avoid getting sick: The best way to prevent COVID-related hearing loss is to do whatever you can to avoid getting COVID in the first place. This means following guidelines regarding social gatherings, physical distancing, and wearing a mask.

While this particular symptom isn’t common, it still occurs. And you will be a lot better off with more knowledge about hearing loss and COIVID. It’s a good choice to come in for an assessment if you think you’ve suffered hearing damage.

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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.