Pregnant woman who's suffering from sudden hearing loss having her blood pressure checked

It’s an awesome and wonderful experience, having a child. But it can also be sort of… unpleasant, at least at times, and at least when it involves how it can make you feel. There are all sorts of weird side effects, including morning sickness, health challenges, and changes to your body. Getting there can be a bit of a process, but that doesn’t detract from the happiness of being a parent.

And now there’s another possible small drawback to add to the list: hearing loss.

Most individuals don’t instantly connect hearing loss with pregnancy. So it may be surprising to learn that pregnancy-related hearing loss is fairly common. It’s not a bad plan to watch out for these symptoms. In some cases, the source of pregnancy-induced hearing loss is innocuous and insignificant. Unfortunately, sometimes the cause is a more serious problem that could call for swift medical treatment. Is hearing loss during pregnancy permanent? Well, it could be, depending on how fast you treat it and what the underlying cause is.

Pregnancy-related hearing loss symptoms

You typically won’t hear about pregnancy-related hearing loss in pop-culture. It isn’t nearly as cinematic as things like morning sickness. People usually don’t expect pregnancy-related hearing loss, because of this. So knowing what to watch out for can be helpful.

Pregnancy-related hearing loss is about more than simply cranking the volume up on your devices, after all. Here are a few of the most common:

  • A feeling of fullness in your ears: A feeling of fullness in the ears frequently accompanies pregnancy-induced hearing loss.
  • Dizziness and imbalance: The inner ear can be affected by pregnancy-induced hearing loss, or in some cases a pre-existing problem with the inner ear can be the source of that hearing loss. Your hearing loss may be accompanied by dizziness and balance issues if you have a problem with your inner ear. Pregnancy-related hearing loss isn’t an exception.
  • Headaches and migraines: You might also experience an increase in the number of headaches or migraines you have on a regular basis.
  • Tinnitus: Pregnancy-related hearing loss is often associated with tinnitus, or a ringing or buzzing in the ears. In some circumstances, this tinnitus might even sound like or take on the rhythm of your own heartbeat (this is known as pulsatile tinnitus). Whether this tinnitus exists on its own or with hearing loss, it’s worth consulting your care team about what you’re feeling.
  • Everything seems quieter: Of course, this indication of hearing loss is the most apparent. But if it comes on suddenly, it’s something called “sudden sensorineural hearing loss”. You should report any abrupt hearing loss during pregnancy to your provider as soon as you can. You may need emergency treatment to stop the sudden hearing loss from becoming permanent.

None of these symptoms are necessarily universal. Depending on the underlying cause of your pregnancy-related hearing loss, you might experience some symptoms but not others. Either way, it’s a good plan to contact your doctor if experience any of these hearing loss symptoms. Because these symptoms may be an indication of a more serious concern.

What causes pregnancy-induced hearing loss?

Is hearing impacted by pregnancy? Well, perhaps, in some cases. But other parts of your body are impacted by pregnancy and those parts of your body can then affect your hearing.

So how can pregnancy-related hearing loss possibly be caused? Here are some of the most prevalent causes:

  • An iron deficiency: Your health, and the health of your child, can both be impacted in a wide variety of ways by an iron deficiency. One of those impacts can sometimes be hearing loss in the woman who is pregnant.
  • Changes in your circulatory system (and hormones): When you become pregnant, your body is doing an exceptional amount of work. Your hormones and circulatory system are going through lots of changes, as an outcome.
  • Some of the typical things: If you get an ear infection, a sinus infection, or any type of obstruction in your ear (such as earwax), this can trigger hearing loss whether you’re pregnant or not.
  • Bone growth: The ability for sound to pass through your ears can be blocked by a disorder called otosclerosis which causes the tiny bones in your ear to grow too fast. In pregnant individuals, this quicker bone growth may be caused by alterations in your hormones or other changes in your body. Otoscerlosis research is still a continuing process, and scientists are still figuring out exactly how much it impacts hearing.
  • High blood pressure: While you are pregnant, high blood pressure can cause tinnitus and hearing loss. So telling your doctor about your hearing loss symptoms is really important. High blood pressure can be a symptom of preeclampsia and other serious conditions. These are issues that should be watched carefully throughout your pregnancy.

In some instances, the cause of your hearing loss simply won’t be all that well understood. The important thing will be to be mindful of your symptoms and be in frequent communication with your doctor.

How is this kind of hearing loss managed?

The root cause of this kind of hearing loss will largely dictate the course of treatment. The question that most people have is: will my hearing return to normal? In most instances, yes, your hearing will go back to normal once your pregnancy is over, or possibly even before.

But it’s also important to get treatment for any symptoms you observe because getting your hearing back isn’t always a given. For example, if bone growth is blocking your ear canal, you could require additional treatment. The results will also depend on how fast you get treatment in the case of sudden sensorineural hearing loss.

That’s why it’s so important to make sure you report these symptoms to your provider. You may then go through a complete hearing screening or assessment to help figure out your symptoms (or at least eliminate any of the more severe possible impacts).

Protect your hearing

Even when you’re pregnant, while you’re juggling so many other things, it’s essential to be certain you pay attention to and safeguard your hearing. One of the best ways to do that is to stay in touch with us and with your care team. Schedule a hearing assessment with us as soon as possible.

Call Today to Set Up an Appointment

The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.
Why wait? You don't have to live with hearing loss. Call Us Today