Psoriatic arthritis is a form of arthritis that affects some people who have the skin condition psoriasis. It causes inflammation around the joints which can lead to pain, swelling and difficulty moving. Research has shown it might also increase your risk of hearing loss.
How Psoriatic Arthritis Affects Hearing
A study published in The Journal of Rheumatology showed that patients with psoriatic arthritis were more likely to report hearing problems than those without the condition. Audiometric testing of participants verified their self-reports.
The reason for this connection is likely due to the chronic inflammation psoriatic arthritis causes. This inflammation can cause damage to the inner ear. Enough damage can lead to hearing loss as well as balance issues.
Manage Inflammation to Prevent Hearing Loss
In order to protect your hearing from any damage caused by psoriatic arthritis, it’s important to control inflammation as best you can. This will likely involve a mix of treatment with medications like disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs) and lifestyle remedies, such as:
- Regular exercise
- Limiting alcohol use
- Learning techniques to put less pressure on your joints when you go about your day (like making sure to lift heavy objects with both hands)
- Getting adequate rest and finding time to relax
Monitor Your Hearing
If you suffer from psoriatic arthritis, it’s important to keep an eye out for any signs of hearing loss or balance issues that may indicate damage to the ear. This can include:
- Tinnitus (ringing in the ear)
- Feeling unsteady when walking
- Needing to ask others to repeat themselves more frequently
- Struggling to hear in places with a lot of background noise, like when out with friends at The Grove Kitchen & Gardens
If you notice any of these symptoms or others that make you concerned about your hearing, make an appointment with an audiologist for a hearing test.
Treat Your Hearing Loss As Soon As Possible
If your hearing test reveals that you have hearing loss, your audiologist will most likely recommend hearing aids. Together you can find a pair that best matches your individual needs and preferences and fits in with your lifestyle.
Though it can seem overwhelming at first, hearing aids allow you to stay connected to the world around you and continue to engage in activities you enjoy without feeling concerned your hearing loss will stand in your way.
For more information or to schedule an appointment with one of our experts, contact SoundLogic today.