There are two types of anxiety. When you are dealing with an emergency situation, that feeling that you get is known as common anxiety. And then you can have the kind of anxiety that isn’t really connected to any one worry or event. They feel anxious frequently, regardless of what you happen to be doing or thinking about. It’s more of a general feeling that seems to pervade the day. This second kind is usually the type of anxiety that’s less of a neuro-typical reaction and more of a mental health concern.
Regrettably, both forms of anxiety are harmful for the human body. Long periods of chronic anxiety can be especially negative. Your alert status is raised by all of the chemicals that are produced when anxiety is experienced. It’s good in the short term, but harmful over a long period of time. Over the long run, anxiety that cannot be dealt with or controlled will start to manifest in distinct physical symptoms.
Bodily Symptoms of Anxiety
Symptoms of anxiety typically include:
- A pounding heart or difficulty breathing often associated with panic attacks
- Overall pain or discomfort in your body
- Paranoia about approaching crisis
- Melancholy and loss of interest in day to day activities
- Feeling as if you are coming out of your skin
But chronic anxiety doesn’t necessarily manifest in the ways that you may predict. In fact, there are some rather interesting ways that anxiety might actually end up affecting things as seemingly obscure as your hearing. For example, anxiety has been linked to:
- Dizziness: Prolonged anxiety can occasionally cause dizziness, which is a condition that could also be related to the ears. After all, the ears are typically in control of your sense of balance (there are these three tubes in your inner ears that are regulating the sense of balance).
- Tinnitus: You probably know that stress can cause the ringing in your ears to get worse, but did you realize that there’s evidence that it can also cause the ringing in your ears to develop over time. This is called tinnitus (which can itself be caused by several other factors). For some, this may even reveal itself as a feeling that the ears are blocked or clogged.
- High Blood Pressure: And a few of the consequences of anxiety are not at all surprising. In this case, we’re talking about elevated blood pressure. Known scientifically as hypertension, high blood pressure can have very adverse effects on the body. It’s definitely not good. High blood pressure has also been recognized to lead to hearing loss, tinnitus and dizziness.
Hearing Loss And Anxiety
Typically on a hearing blog like this we would tend to concentrate on, well, hearing. And how well you hear. Keeping that in mind, you’ll forgive us if we take a little time to talk about how anxiety and hearing loss can influence one another in some fairly disturbing ways.
The isolation is the first and foremost concern. People tend to pull away from social activities when they have hearing loss, tinnitus or balance issues. Maybe you’ve experienced this with somebody you know. Perhaps a relative just withdrew from conversations because they were embarrassed that they have to constantly repeat themselves. The same goes for balance issues. It can be tough to admit to your friends and family that you have a hard time driving or even walking because you have balance problems.
There are also other reasons why anxiety and depression can lead to social isolation. Normally, you aren’t going to be around people if you’re not feeling like yourself. Sadly, one can end up feeding the other and can become an unhealthy loop. The negative effects of isolation can happen quickly and will result in various other problems and can even result in mental decline. It can be even harder to fight the effects of isolation if you’re dealing with hearing loss and anxiety.
Discovering The Proper Treatment
Finding the correct treatment is significant particularly given how much hearing loss, tinnitus, anxiety and isolation feed on each other.
If tinnitus and hearing loss are symptoms you’re struggling with, obtaining proper treatment for them can also help with your other symptoms. And as far as depression and anxiety, connecting with others who can relate can be really helpful. At the very least, treating these symptoms can help with the sense of solitude that could make chronic anxiety more severe. So that you can figure out what treatments are best for you, consult your doctor and your hearing specialist. Hearing aids might be the best choice as part of your treatment depending on what your hearing test reveals. The right treatment for anxiety may include therapy or medication. Tinnitus has also been shown to be effectively treated by cognitive-behavioral therapy.
Here’s to Your Health
We understand, then, that anxiety can have very real, very severe repercussions for your physical health and your mental health.
Isolation and cognitive decline have also been shown as a repercussion of hearing loss. In conjunction with anxiety, that’s a recipe for, well, a difficult time. Fortunately, a favorable difference can be accomplished by getting the right treatment for both conditions. Anxiety doesn’t need to have long lasting effects on your body and the impact of anxiety on your body can be reversed. The sooner you get treatment, the better.