COVID-19 has a few uncommon symptoms like dampening your sense of smell and taste. Indeed, loss of smell is often one of the first signs of infection. But COVID-19 affects more than just your sense of taste and smell. New discoveries are uncovering an uncommon, but longer-term problem: permanent sensorineural hearing loss.
How is Hearing Loss Triggered by COVID-19?
Each day scientists are finding out more with regards to COVID-19. But there’s still a great deal we don’t understand. The virus itself was only first observed late in 2019. Normally, scientists work for years, if not decades, to thoroughly identify a new pathogen. One thing we’re discovering about COVID is that it impacts different individuals in a lot of different ways (making it a really difficult and challenging nemesis).
You may experience a wide variety of symptoms. And one of those symptoms is permanent hearing loss. Scientists still aren’t certain why that happens. It could be something known as “cellular stress” caused by the virus. Some cells (like the cells in your ear) will begin to breakdown, according to this hypothesis, because the virus places so much stress on the body. But this type of hearing loss might also be the result of your body’s own immune response. Considerable damage can be done to your body when your immune system goes into overdrive.
It’s also worth mentioning that sometimes this hearing loss can first appear when other COVID symptoms are on their way out. The actual timing isn’t completely known. We are also clueless why it’s more or less likely to occur.
Can This Hearing Loss be Managed?
Sensorineural hearing loss triggered by COVID-19 can definitely be permanent. There may be some treatment options depending on specific variables. It’s already been observed that early steroid treatments seem to help protect your hearing from added damage. It’s essential to see a doctor right away if you experience sudden loss of hearing.
Having a hearing exam after your COVID has passed is always a good idea.
But it’s worth noting that there are a few qualifiers to all of this. Hearing loss, first off, is not a very common COVID symptom. Right now, we’re not sure how prevalent this symptom is. But it’s likely that the science on COVID will continue to update and change as scientists discover more.
Can You Prevent COVID-Induced Hearing Loss?
If you have sudden changes in your hearing and you have COVID-19 get in touch with your doctor and schedule a hearing test with us. An early response might help decrease long-term hearing loss.
Try to stay healthy: The best way to protect against COVID-related hearing loss is to do everything possible to steer clear of getting COVID in the first place. So when it comes to things such as social distancing, social gatherings, and wearing a mask, follow the guidelines.
This symptom does occur though it’s rare. And the more information you have concerning COVID and hearing loss, the better. If you think you’ve already suffered hearing damage, it’s definitely a wise decision to come in and get evaluated.