Some of our blog readers are people investigating digital hearing aids for older loved ones. It is that group of individuals we want to address in this post by stating the following: your hearing is more delicate than you know. So many things can affect hearing over a person’s lifetime that it’s difficult to pinpoint exactly why certain individuals suffer hearing loss while others do not.
As one example, did you know that a recent study reported by the Daily Mail and echoed by the NHS indicates that long-term use of certain over-the-counter painkillers can contribute to hearing loss in women? Indeed, the study found a link between long-term use of paracetamol or ibuprofen and hearing loss.
Researchers discovered that women who used NSAIDs at least twice per week for 12 months or longer had a higher risk of hearing loss compared to those who didn’t use the painkillers quite as often. Furthermore, the risk of hearing loss increased with the length of time subjects used the drugs.
What is not clear is the cause-and-effect. One possible explanation is that certain NSAID drugs can damage multiple components of the ear including its protective layer and the tiny hairs that vibrate when sound waves are present. Researchers also say that NSAIDs can reduce blood flow to the ears.
The NHS recommends checking with your GP for other options if you find yourself taking over-the-counter painkillers, like ibuprofen, on a regular basis. If there are other ways to treat your pain, you may be able to reduce your risk of developing hearing loss in the future.
Darroch offers free hearing tests if you’re concerned about your hearing right now. If you are suffering hearing loss, you may benefit from a digital hearing aid.
1. NHS – http://www.nhs.uk/news/2016/12December/Pages/Long-term-painkiller-use-linked-to-hearing-loss-in-women.aspx