I bet that you can think of at least one person you know with Diabetes. And here’s something that might come as a surprise; diabetes puts you at risk for changes in your hearing. Even the folks at the Center for Disease Control had no resources or understanding of the connection when approached several years ago.
One of our colleagues, Dr. Kathy Dowd took it upon herself with the backing of the Academy of Doctors of Audiology and American Academy of Audiology to start spreading the word, grass roots. It’s now every audiologist’s responsibility to educate, so here’s my turn.
We’d love you to tell everyone you know who has Diabetes to get their hearing checked. The dentist, podiatrist, optometrist, ophthalmologist and pharmacist all keep a close watch on their diabetic patients. Eyes, feet, teeth, and vital organs all get special attention. We need to add ears to this list.
Hearing problems affect 30% of those diagnosed with diabetes. People with type 2 diabetes are twice as likely to have hearing loss as those without diabetes. Keep in mind that fall risk is also of concern. For hearing and balance disorders, the provider of choice is an audiologist.
So take a moment and think about all the people you love. If they have diabetes and no one has checked their hearing, tell them that it’s time to see an audiologist for evaluation. Let’s spread the word.