Sleep is precious. If you don’t get a full, restful seven to eight hours of sleep, you get up cranky and groggy, an undesirable feeling that only three cups of coffee can keep at bay. So you were aghast when your loss of hearing started to cause you to lose sleep.
Understandably so. But there’s a little something that can be of assistance, thankfully: a hearing aid. According to recent surveys and research, these tiny devices can most likely help you sleep better.
How is Sleep Affected by Hearing Loss?
Even though you feel tired all day and are exhausted by bedtime, you still toss and turn and have a difficult time falling asleep. All of these problems began about the same time you also began to notice that your radio, television, and mobile phone were becoming hard to hear.
It’s not your imagination as it turns out. There is a well-documented relationship between loss of hearing and insomnia, even if the precise sources aren’t precisely clear. There are, naturally, some theories:
- As you develop hearing loss, your brain starts straining, it’s searching for inputs from your ears where none exists. If your brain is in high gear attempting to hear while you’re trying to sleep, your entire cycle could be thrown off (It’s the typical issue of not being able to get the brain to turn off).
- You can be kept awake by tinnitus which can cause humming, ringing, or thumping noises in your ears. (Lack of sleep can also cause your tinnitus to get worse, which can then cause stronger insomnia, it’s a vicious cycle).
- Loss of hearing is connected to depression, and depression can cause chemical imbalances in the brain that interrupt your sleep cycle. This makes it harder to fall asleep and stay asleep.
Can Your Sleep be Improved by Using Hearing Aids?
According to one study, 44% of people with hearing loss who don’t wear hearing aids documented being satisfied with their sleep compared to 59% sleep satisfaction among those who did use a hearing aid. So does that mean it’s safe to assume hearing aids are also a kind of sleep aid?
Not exactly. If your hearing is totally normal, wearing hearing aids isn’t going to cure your insomnia.
But if you are suffering from hearing loss, your hearing aids can target numerous problems that could be worsening your insomnia:
- Tinnitus: Depending on the nature and cause of your tinnitus, hearing aids may provide a reliable means of managing that buzzing and ringing. This can help short circuit that vicious cycle and help you get some sleep.
- Isolation: Your not so likely to feel isolated and depressed if you can hook up with people in your social network when you’re out on the town. Relationships get easier when you use hearing aids (sleep cycle problems that lead to “cabin fever” can also be lessened).
- Strain: Your hearing aids will effectively reduce the burden on your brain. And your brain won’t be as likely to strain while falling asleep if it isn’t struggling all of the rest of the time.
Achieving a Better Night Sleep Using Hearing Aids
It’s not just how many hours you sleep that’s relevant here. How deep you sleep is as relevant as the number of hours. Hearing aids can enhance your ability to attain a restful nights sleep because loss of hearing without hearing aids can reduce deep sleep.
it should be pointed out that even though they’ll help better your sleep, most hearing aids are not supposed to be used overnight. They don’t help you hear better when you’re in bed (you won’t be capable of hearing your alarm clock better, for example). And your hearing aids can definitely wear out quicker if you use them during the night. It’s wearing them during the day that helps you get better sleep.
Go to Bed!
Sleep is precious. Your stress level, your immune system, and your ability to think clearly will all be helped by ample sleep. Proper sleep habits have even been linked to reduced risks for heart disease and diabetes.
When your sleep schedule is disturbed by your loss of hearing, the issue becomes more than aggravating, insomnia can frequently become a real health issue. Luckily, people document having better quality sleep when they use hearing aids.