Sleep is precious. If you don’t get a full, restful seven to eight hours of sleep, you get up groggy and cranky, an unpleasant feeling that only three cups of coffee can keep at bay. So you were aghast when your hearing loss started to cause you to lose sleep.
Justifiably so. Luckily, there’s a little something that can be of assistance: a hearing aid. Based upon the most recent surveys and research, these little devices can most likely help you sleep better.
How is Sleep Affected by Loss of Hearing?
Despite the fact that you feel fatigued all day and are exhausted by bedtime, you still toss and turn and have a hard time falling asleep. All of these problems began around the same time you also began to notice that your radio, television, and mobile phone were becoming difficult to hear.
Turns out, you’re not imagining things. It’s well documented that individuals who have loss of hearing often have a hard time falling asleep, but precisely why is not well understood. Some theories have been put forward:
- Hearing loss is connected to depression, and depression can result in chemical imbalances in the brain that disrupt your sleep cycle. As a result of this, falling asleep and staying asleep becomes harder.
- Tinnitus can make you hear thumping, humming, and ringing and that noise can keep you awake at night. (Lack of sleep can also cause your tinnitus to get worse, which can then cause stronger insomnia, it’s a vicious cycle).
- As you develop loss of hearing, your brain starts straining, it’s searching for stimulus from your ears where none exists. Your whole cycle could be thrown off if your brain is working overtime trying to hear (it’s that “my brain won’t shut off” problem).
Can Hearing Aids Help Your Sleep?
According to one study, 44% of people with loss of hearing who don’t use hearing aids reported being satisfied with their sleep compared to 59% sleep satisfaction from those who did use a hearing aid. So are hearing aids a sleep aid or what?
Not really. If your hearing is perfectly 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 issues that could be contributing to your insomnia:
- Strain: The strain on your brain will effectively reduced by wearing hearing aids. And when your brain isn’t always struggling to hear everything around you, it’ll be less likely to continue that practice when you’re trying to sleep.
- Isolation: If you’re out on the town, hooking up with the people in your social group, you’re less likely to feel depressed and isolated. Hearing aids make retaining relationships less difficult (this can also decrease “cabin fever”-related sleep cycle issues).
- Tinnitus: Hearing aids might be a practical treatment for that ringing or buzzing, depending on the nature of your tinnitus. This can assist you to get to sleep by stopping that vicious cycle.
Using Hearing Aids to Achieve a Better Night Sleep
It’s not just the number of hours that’s relevant here. How deep you sleep is as relevant as how many hours you sleep. Hearing aids can improve your ability to attain a restful nights sleep because hearing loss without hearing aids can prevent deep sleep.
Using your hearing aids on the suggested daytime schedule will benefit your sleep but it’s significant to note that hearing aids aren’t ordinarily meant to be used at night. They don’t help you hear better when you’re sleeping (for example, you won’t hear your alarm clock better). And, after a while, using your hearing aids at night can reduce their performance. You get deeper sleep if you use them during the day.
Go to Bed!
Sleep is valuable. Your immune system, your stress levels, and your ability to think clearly will all be enhanced by sufficient sleep. Healthy sleep habits have even been connected to reduced risks for diabetes and heart disease.
When your loss of hearing begins to disrupt your sleep schedule, it’s not only a small irritation, insomnia can often become a serious health concern. Fortunately, most surveys report that people who use hearing aids have improved quality of sleep.