Vertigo is a sensation that makes us feel as if we, or the things around us, are spinning. We may have felt that way at college before we discovered what it’s like to have one too many drinks. However, vertigo is actually a medical condition and it can occur at any time.
So let’s explore the persistent rumor that digital hearing aids cause vertigo. We’ll also touch on a few other urban legends about hearing and hearing aids, and to what extent these are true.
What Causes Vertigo If It’s Not Electronic Hearing Aids?
Vertigo can arrive out the blue and last a few seconds or it can last several days making the following symptoms difficult to endure:
- Loss of balance, feeling dizzy
- Feeling nauseous or worse
What is Balance, How Does It Work?
Balance is our ability to maintain the line of gravity without support, and with minimal postural sway. Three sensory systems help us remain upright, and these have nothing to do with digital or analog hearing aids:
- Our vestibular system regulating the equilibrium of our head position
- The somatosensory system regulating body parts relative to each other
- Our visual system that keep us in touch with objects around us
Factors That May Trigger an Onset of Vertigo
Some balance impairments are associated with aging and slower reactions. However, this is not due to wearing a digital or analog hearing aid. It is the result of age-related decline in one or more balancing systems. And it is the cause of one in three adults aged 65 and over falling over each year.
Hearing aids do not cause vertigo, although there is a tenuous, non-causal relationship as follows:
- The vestibular nerve in the inner ear helping control balance may become infected
- A inner-ear disease called labyrinthitis can cause inflammation affecting hearing and balance
Other possibilities include severe migraine headaches, and benign paroxysmal positional vertigo triggering the condition.
Analog and Digital Hearing Aids Can Actually Improve Balance
Researchers at University of Washington found hearing aids improve balance in older adults with hearing loss. They were able to demonstrate this by turning subjects’ hearing aids on and off while doing standard balancing tests.
Signia-Hearing explains this phenomenon in terms of a sight analogy. We lose our sense of orientation, direction and balance when we turn the light off when it is dark, they explain. However, our ears are still working in all directions and they help us locate auditory ‘landmarks’ that help us re-orientate and recover balance.
This is proof positive that digital or analog hearing aids do not cause vertigo. If anything, a pair of electronic hearing aids could improve the situation. But that’s enough science for now. We promised to share a few other persistent urban legends about hearing and hearing aids, and here they come.
Persistent Urban Legends about Hearing and Hearing Aids
Myth 1 - Blind and Partly Sighted People Hear Better
It’s possible, but not proven that one sense compensates for the loss of another one. People with seeing difficulties may hence rely more on their hearing, and ‘tune it’ to a higher level of acuity. They may also develop a more acute sense of touch as they walk down a road tapping a stick.
Myth 2 - Hard of Hearing Children Develop Faster in Single-Language Environments
There is no scientific evidence for this. Researchers at Kennedy Krieger Institute found the human brain can learn multiple languages and use them in childhood. However, we have had clients tell us their children got better grades after they started wearing digital hearing aids.
Myth 3 - Wearing a Digital or Analog Hearing Aid Makes Ears Lazy
Nothing could be farther from the truth. As our hearing fades in older age, our brains forget what sounds were like they can no longer hear. As a result, their hearing no longer has to work as hard. It’s as if they become ‘lazy’.
St Jude Children’s Research Hospital confirms ears start recovering these lost sounds with assistance from hearing aids. In fact they start ‘working harder’ although this can take several weeks or even months.
The defining moment will be when you put on your Blue Angels hearing aids one morning, and say to yourself ‘hey I’m hearing better again’.
Are You Ready to Get Your Hearing Working Better Again?
We can’t recommend you visit a high street hearing aid store, or an expensive one in an exclusive shopping mall. This is at least partly because the high prices may put you off, and you drop the idea.
Blue Angels delivers run-of-mill digital hearing aids that have made a huge difference to tens of thousands of clients, many whom are elderly folk. Our price won’t make you fall over as if you were having vertigo either. Click here and discover how to improve your hearing for under $200 including shipping.