Anxiety comes in two forms. When you are coping with a crisis, that feeling that you get is known as common anxiety. Some people experience anxiety even when there are no particular situations or concerns to connect it to. 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 sort of anxiety is usually more of a mental health concern than a neurological response.
Regrettably, both types of anxiety are harmful for the human body. It can be particularly damaging if you experience extended or chronic anxiety. When it feels anxiety, your body produces a myriad of chemicals that raise your alert status. For short durations, when you genuinely need them, these chemicals are a good thing but they can be damaging if they are produced over longer periods of time. Specific physical symptoms will begin to appear if anxiety can’t be treated and lasts for longer periods of time.
Physical Symptoms of Anxiety
Symptoms of anxiety typically consist of:
- Physical weakness
- Feeling agitated or irritated
- A thumping heart or shortness of breath often linked to panic attacks
- Depression and loss of interest in day to day activities
- A feeling that something horrible is about to occur
- General aches or soreness in your body
But in some cases, anxiety is experienced in unexpected ways. Indeed, there are some pretty interesting ways that anxiety might actually wind up affecting things as apparently obscure as your hearing. For example, anxiety has been connected with:
- Dizziness: Dizziness, which can also be related to the ears, is commonly a symptom of chronic anxiety. Do not forget, your sense of balance is governed by the ears (there are these three tubes inside of your inner ears that are regulating the sense of balance).
- Tinnitus: You probably understand that stress can cause the ringing in your ears to get worse, but did you know that there is evidence that it can also cause the ringing in your ears to develop over time. This is known as tinnitus (which, itself can have any number of other causes as well). In certain situations, the ears can feel blocked or clogged (it’s amazing what anxiety can do).
- High Blood Pressure: And then there are certain ways that anxiety influences your body in exactly the way you’d expect it to. Elevated blood pressure is one of those. Known scientifically as hypertension, high blood pressure often has extremely adverse effects on the body. It is, to make use of a colloquialism, not so great. Dizziness, hearing loss and tinnitus can also be brought about by high blood pressure.
Anxiety And Hearing Loss
Because this is a hearing website, we typically tend to focus on, well, hearing. And your how well to hear. With that in mind, you’ll excuse us if we spend a little bit of time talking about how hearing loss and anxiety can feed one another in some slightly disturbing ways.
The solitude is the first and foremost issue. People tend to withdraw from social activities when they suffer from hearing loss, tinnitus or balance issues. You may have experienced this with your own family members. Maybe a relative just withdrew from conversations because they were embarrassed by having to constantly repeat themselves. The same goes for balance issues. It may influence your ability to walk or drive, which can be embarrassing to admit to friends and family.
Social isolation is also associated with depression and anxiety in other ways. When you don’t feel yourself, you don’t want to be around others. Sadly, one can end up feeding the other and can become an unhealthy loop. The negative impact of isolation can occur quickly and will trigger numerous other problems and can even result in mental decline. It can be even more difficult to combat the effects of isolation if you have hearing loss and anxiety.
Choosing The Correct Treatment
Finding the proper treatment is important particularly given how much anxiety, hearing loss, tinnitus and isolation feed on each other.
All of the symptoms for these ailments can be helped by obtaining treatment for your tinnitus and hearing loss. And when it comes to anxiety and depression, connecting with others who can relate can be extremely helpful. Chronic anxiety is more serious when there is an overwhelming sense of isolation and dealing with the symptoms can help with that. In order to figure out what treatments will be most effective for your situation, check with your doctor and your hearing specialist. Depending on what your hearing test shows, the right treatment for hearing loss or tinnitus might be hearing aids. The best treatment for anxiety might involve therapy or medication. Tinnitus has also been shown to be successfully treated with cognitive-behavioral therapy.
Here’s to Your Health
We recognize that your mental and physical health can be seriously affected by anxiety.
Isolation and cognitive decline have also been recognized as a consequence of hearing loss. When you add anxiety to the recipe, it makes for a pretty challenging situation. Luckily, we have treatments for both conditions, and obtaining that treatment can make a huge, positive difference. Anxiety doesn’t need to have long lasting effects on your body and the impact of anxiety on your body can be reversed. The key is finding treatment as soon as you can.