There are two types of anxiety. You can have common anxiety, that feeling you get when you’re involved with an emergency situation. And then there’s the kind of anxiety that isn’t actually attached to any one worry or situation. No matter what’s going on around them or what’s on their mind, they frequently feel anxiety. It’s just there in the background all through the day. This second form is generally the kind of anxiety that’s less of a neuro-typical reaction and more of a mental health concern.
Regrettably, both forms of anxiety are pretty terrible for the human body. It can be particularly harmful if you experience prolonged or chronic anxiety. When it feels anxiety, your body releases a myriad of chemicals that raise your alert status. It’s a good thing in the short term, but harmful over a long period of time. Over the long run, anxiety that cannot be managed or controlled will begin to manifest in distinct physical symptoms.
Physical Symptoms of Anxiety
Some symptoms of anxiety are:
- Physical weakness
- Loss of interest and depression
- Fear about approaching disaster
- Feeling agitated or irritated
- Bodily discomfort
- A racing heart or difficulty breathing commonly connected to panic attacks
But chronic anxiety doesn’t necessarily appear in the ways that you may anticipate. Anxiety can even effect vague body functions such as your hearing. For example, anxiety has been associated with:
- High Blood Pressure: And some of the consequences of anxiety are not at all surprising. Elevated blood pressure is one of those. Known scientifically as hypertension, high blood pressure can have an array of negative secondary effects on your body. It’s definitely not good. High blood pressure has also been known to cause hearing loss, tinnitus and dizziness.
- Tinnitus: Did you realize that stress not only worsens the ringing in your ears but that it can cause the development of that ringing. This is known as tinnitus (which can itself be caused by several other factors). For a few, this might even reveal itself as a feeling of blockage or clogging of the ears.
- Dizziness: Persistent anxiety can sometimes make you feel dizzy, which is an issue that could also stem from the ears. After all, the ears are typically responsible for your sense of balance (there are these three tubes inside of your inner ears which are regulating the sense of balance).
Hearing Loss And Anxiety
Typically on a hearing blog such as this we would usually concentrate on, well, hearing. And your how well to hear. With that in mind, you’ll forgive us if we spend a little bit of time talking about how anxiety and hearing loss can feed one another in some fairly disturbing ways.
The solitude is the first and foremost concern. When someone suffers from hearing loss, tinnitus or even balance problems, they often pull away from social contact. You may have experienced this with your own family. Maybe your mother or father got tired of asking you to repeat yourself, or didn’t want to be embarrassed by not understanding and so they stopped talking so much. The same goes for balance issues. It can be tough to admit to your family and friends that you have a hard time driving or even walking because you have balance troubles.
There are also other ways anxiety and depression can lead to social isolation. Typically, you aren’t going to be around anyone if you’re not feeling like yourself. Unfortunately, this can be somewhat of a loop where one feeds into the other. The negative impact of isolation can happen quickly and will bring about several other problems and can even result in mental decline. It can be even more difficult to combat the effects of isolation if you have hearing loss and anxiety.
Discovering The Correct Treatment
Tinnitus, hearing loss, anxiety and isolation can all feed on each other. That’s why finding the proper treatment is so important.
All of the symptoms for these disorders can be assisted by obtaining treatment for your tinnitus and hearing loss. Interacting with others has been shown to help reduce both anxiety and depression. At the very least, treating these symptoms can help with the sense of solitude that could make chronic anxiety more extreme. Consult your general practitioner and hearing specialist to explore your choices for treatment. Depending on what your hearing test shows, the right treatment for hearing loss or tinnitus may involve hearing aids. And for anxiety, medication and other kinds of therapy may be required. Cognitive-behavioral therapy has also been demonstrated to help control tinnitus.
Here’s to Your Health
We understand that your mental and physical health can be seriously affected by anxiety.
We also realize that hearing loss can lead to isolation and cognitive decline. In conjunction with anxiety, that’s a recipe for, well, a difficult time. Thankfully, we have treatments for both conditions, and obtaining that treatment can make a big, positive effect. The health impacts of anxiety don’t have to be permanent. The effect of anxiety on your body does not have to last. The key is finding treatment as soon as possible.