COVID-19 has a few uncommon symptoms like dampening your sense of taste and smell. Indeed, loss of smell is often one of the first indications of infection. But your sense of smell and taste aren’t the only sense affected by COVID-19. New discoveries are pointing to an unusual, but longer-term problem: irreversible sensorineural hearing loss.
How is Hearing Loss Brought on by COVID-19?
Each day scientists are finding out more about COVID-19. But we’re truly in the dark in many ways. The virus itself was only first observed late in 2019. Usually, scientists work for years, even decades, to fully describe a new pathogen. And COVIC-19 is especially challenging because it effects different individuals in different ways.
You may experience a wide variety of symptoms. And permanent hearing loss can be one of them. Scientists still aren’t sure why that is. It could be something called “cellular stress” caused by the virus. Based on this theory, COVID puts so much stress on your body that some cells (such as those responsible for hearing) start to break down. But your body’s own immune response may also be responsible for this kind of hearing loss. On occasion, your immune system can go into high gear and winds up causing considerable damage to your body.
Additionally, when other COVID symptoms are almost gone, this hearing loss can still show up. Again, we’re not really certain why this happens. We are also clueless why it’s more or less likely to occur.
Is There Any Treatment For This Type of Hearing Loss?
Sensorineural hearing loss triggered by COVID-19 can definitely be permanent. Of course, there are a lot of variables, and there are a few treatments, also. It’s already been observed that early steroid treatments appear to help protect your hearing from further damage. If you do experience sudden loss of hearing, you should see a doctor.
Having a hearing test after your COVID has passed is always a good idea.
But it’s worth noting that there are a couple of qualifiers to all of this. First and foremost, hearing loss does appear to be a relatively uncommon symptom of COVID. At the moment, we’re not certain how prevalent this symptom is. But as scientists learn more about COVID-19 the science will change.
Can You Avoid COVID-Related Hearing Loss?
Right now, if you’re already suffering with COVID, you should let us or your doctor know right away if hearing changes suddenly. An early response might help decrease lasting hearing loss.
Try to stay healthy: Safeguarding yourself from getting COVID-19 is the best way to prevent this type of hearing loss. So with regards to things like social distancing, social gatherings, and wearing a mask, stick to the guidelines.
This symptom does occur though it’s rare. And the more facts you have concerning COVID and hearing loss, the better. If you think you’ve already suffered hearing damage, it’s definitely a good idea to come in and get examined.