One of the most unusual symptoms of COVID-19 is that it’s able to temporarily deaden your senses of smell and taste. Indeed, loss of smell is often one of the first symptoms of infection. But COVID-19 impacts more than just your sense of taste and smell. Sensorineural hearing loss is an uncommon and long-term problem according to new findings.
How Can COVID-19 Cause Hearing Loss?
Every day scientists are discovering more about COVID-19. But we’re really in the dark in many ways. The virus itself was only first discovered late in 2019. New pathogens usually take years or decades for scientists to identify. And COVIC-19 is especially challenging because it effects different individuals in different ways.
There are lots of symptoms you can suffer from. And irreversible hearing loss can be one of them. Researchers still aren’t certain why that is. The virus may be triggering a response known as “cellular stress”. Some cells (such as the cells in your ear) will begin to deteriorate, according to this hypothesis, because the virus puts so much stress on the body. But your body’s own immune response could also be responsible for this kind of hearing loss. Sometimes, your immune system can go into high gear and winds up causing significant damage to your body.
It’s also worth pointing out that occasionally this hearing loss can first present when other COVID symptoms are on their way out. The actual timing isn’t precisely understood. Nor do we have a solid grasp of what sort of underlying circumstances might cause COVID-related hearing loss to be more or less likely to happen.
Is There Any Treatment For This Sort of Hearing Loss?
Irreversible sensorineural hearing loss is possible with COVID-19. Of course, there are many variables, and there are a few treatments, too. In fact, researchers have already recognized that steroid treatments appear to help protect your hearing, particularly if you undergo early treatment. If you are affected by sudden loss of hearing, you need to consult a doctor.
Either way, once you’ve completely recovered from your COVID-19 experience, it may be a good move to visit us and have a hearing screening.
But it’s worth pointing out that there are a few qualifiers to all of this. Hearing loss, first off, isn’t a very common COVID symptom. At the moment, 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 learn more.
Can You Avoid COVID-Related Hearing Loss?
If you have sudden changes in your hearing and you have COVID-19 contact your doctor and make an appointment for a hearing exam with us. An early response may help minimize lasting hearing loss.
Try to avoid getting sick: The best way to prevent COVID-related hearing loss is to do everything possible to steer clear of contracting COVID in the first place. This means following guidelines regarding social gatherings, physical distancing, and wearing a mask.
While this specific symptom isn’t common, it still occurs. And the more facts you have concerning COVID and hearing loss, the better. If you think you’ve already had hearing damage, it’s probably a good idea to come in and get tested.