Exercise Could Reduce Your Risk for Hearing Loss

Exercise Could Reduce Your Risk for Hearing Loss

Do you ever find yourself struggling to hear conversations or missing important sounds around you? Hearing loss can be frustrating and isolating, but did you know that exercise may help reduce your risk of experiencing it? That’s right, incorporating regular exercise into your routine can have a positive impact on your hearing health. In this blog, we’ll explore the link between exercise and hearing health, how exercise may help prevent hearing loss, and the types of exercise that can make a difference.

The Relationship Between Exercise and Hearing Health

While it may seem surprising, there is a growing body of research suggesting that exercise can reduce the risk of hearing loss. According to a decade-long study conducted by Miami University, involving 1000 participants of all ages, those aged over 50 with moderate-to-high levels of cardiovascular fitness were able to maintain hearing sensitivity comparable to individuals in their 30s. This suggests that regular exercise may delay the onset of presbycusis. 

How Exercise May Help Prevent Hearing Loss

Improved blood flow to the ears: As mentioned, regular exercise can increase blood flow to the ears, which can help to nourish the cells in the inner ear. This can be particularly important for people who are at risk for hearing loss due to factors such as aging or noise exposure.

Decreased inflammation and oxidative stress: Inflammation and oxidative stress can damage cells throughout the body, including in the ear. Regular exercise has been shown to reduce inflammation and oxidative stress, which can help to protect against damage that can lead to hearing loss.

Improved overall health and reduced risk factors for hearing loss: Exercise has numerous health benefits beyond just hearing health. Regular exercise can help to reduce the risk of chronic diseases such as diabetes and heart disease, both of which have been linked to an increased risk of hearing loss. Additionally, exercise can help to maintain a healthy weight, which can also reduce the risk of hearing loss.

Types of Exercise That Can Help Prevent Hearing Loss

Cardiovascular exercise

Incorporating cardiovascular exercises such as walking, running, or cycling into your routine can enhance blood flow to the ears and contribute to better overall health. It’s recommended to engage in at least 30 minutes of moderate-intensity cardiovascular exercise most days of the week.

Strength training

Strength training can help to build and maintain muscle mass, which is important for overall health as we age. Additionally, some studies have suggested that strength training may have specific benefits for hearing health. Aim for two to three strength training sessions per week, focusing on all major muscle groups.

Yoga and meditation

Yoga and meditation can help to reduce stress and promote relaxation, both of which are important for overall health and may have specific benefits for hearing health. In one study, participants who practiced yoga for 12 weeks had significantly better hearing thresholds compared to a control group.

Other Ways to Protect Your Hearing

While exercise can be a powerful tool for protecting your hearing, it’s important to take other steps as well. 

Avoiding loud noises is one of the most important things you can do to protect your hearing. If you’re in a loud environment, use earplugs or noise-canceling headphones to reduce your exposure. Additionally, getting regular hearing tests can help to catch any hearing loss early, when it may be more easily treated. Finally, proper ear cleaning can help to prevent ear infections and other issues that can lead to hearing loss over time.

Incorporating regular exercise into your routine can have a positive impact on your hearing health, helping to reduce the risk of hearing loss over time. Cardiovascular exercise, strength training, and yoga and meditation are all great options for promoting hearing health. Of course, it’s important to take other steps to protect your hearing as well, such as avoiding loud noises and getting regular hearing tests.

We understand the importance of hearing health and are committed to helping our patients maintain healthy hearing throughout their lives. If you’re concerned about your hearing or would like to schedule a hearing test, we invite you to contact us today. Our experienced audiologists can provide personalized recommendations for protecting and improving your hearing, whether through exercise, hearing aids, or other treatments. Don’t let hearing loss hold you back from living life to the fullest – contact us today to learn more!