Moods are Affected by Hearing Impairment | Blog | Nardelli Audiology

Moods are Affected by Hearing Impairment

By Melissa Carnes Rose, Au.D. April 15, 2024
Moods are Affected by Hearing Impairment - Nardelli Audiology Blog

Being moody can result from several different factors in life. At times we blame it on the raging hormones of the teenage years, sometimes on being pregnant, and other times even on the weather. Recent research suggests that mood shifts can occur due to hearing loss.

The woes of hearing loss are many, ranging from psychological effects such as clinical depression to physiological effects such as cardiovascular disease. Needless to say, due to the frustrating nature of hearing loss, it can easily affect the mood of the afflicted person.

Hearing loss results in loss of productivity in the workplace which can lead to unemployment or even retirement before time. The annual loss of income due to hearing loss, as reported by the World Health Organization, amounts to approximately $105 billion.

If hearing loss can affect one’s mood, can it also be that one’s mood can affect hearing loss? This was the question that researchers at the Washington State University in Vancouver set out to answer. They studied the extent of hearing loss due to changes in levels of dopamine in the brain.

Dopamine is a hormone secreted in the portion of the brain known as the hypothalamus and is responsible for the regulation of our various moods. This substance is crucial in maintaining proper functioning of the entire body as well as the mind. Excess in dopamine can lead to schizophrenia while deficiency in dopamine can result in Parkinson’s disease. Researchers in the study found that dopamine levels play an important role in the way sound is interpreted by the brain.

You can increase the amount of dopamine in your system by routinely exercising and maintaining a balanced diet. A simple exercise routine consisting of only half an hour a day can make a significant difference to your life and hearing health. You can also cut out stress and sugar from your life to further enhance these positive effects.

Maintaining a healthy nutrition habit by consuming foods that contain high amounts of tyrosine can further help enhance the levels of dopamine in your brain. Food items that are rich in tyrosine include eggs, almonds, cherries, yogurt, as well as bananas. Always opt for whole grains over refined flour, and eat lots of fresh fruits and leafy vegetables to help kick up the dopamine in your system and boost your mood.

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