20 million Americans have it, but only 8 million know they do. It’s thyroid disease. The reason why so many people with this disease don’t know they have it, is because the thyroid gland is so vital to so many bodily functions that the symptoms can appear random and confusing. Often symptoms of thyroid disease will be put down to some other cause. The end result is that thyroid disease can go untreated and when that happens, symptoms, including hearing loss, can get worse.


What does thyroid disease have to do with hearing loss?

The research is clear on one thing – certain types of thyroid disease lead to hearing loss. Hashimoto’s disease, Grave’s disease and Pendred Syndrome are 3 of the main ones we know about.

Why? There isn’t such a clear answer on that. The thyroid gland produces two hormones that are vital to our metabolism, but how these hormones affect hearing is not yet fully understood.

If you are experiencing symptoms of hearing loss, perhaps you are straining to hear people on the phone or in person, then thyroid disease may be the cause, especially if you are experiencing some of the other symptoms of thyroid disease.


Signs that you have thyroid disease

As we mentioned earlier, the symptoms of thyroid disease are quite a varied bunch. This is partly because your thyroid gland is so important to the correct function of so many of your cells and partly because thyroid disease can cause your thyroid hormone levels to either go up, or go down.

Hyperthyroidism is when your thyroid gland makes too much hormone and in this situation you can experience unexpected weight loss, difficulty sleeping at night, vision problems, muscle weakness, irritability and anxiety.

Hypothyroidism is when your thyroid gland makes too little hormone and this causes unexpected weight gain, fatigue, depression and forgetfulness.

Goiter is a condition where your thyroid gland swells up. This makes it harder to swallow and breath.

And finally there is thyroid cancer, with symptoms including pain and swelling in the front of the neck where the thyroid sits, trouble swallowing and breathing, as well as changes in your voice.


Making the connection

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, you should visit your doctor as soon as possible. If you are also experiencing hearing loss it may or may not be related to thyroid disease. In the case of thyroid cancer, hearing loss is usually caused by the treatment and not the cancer itself.

Making the connection between your hearing loss and thyroid disease is the job of your doctor and Audiologist.

If you are concerned about your hearing, click here to book an appointment with Cornerstone Audiology, the most trusted and professional hearing provider in West Texas. They will carry out a thorough hearing examination to find out what the problem is.

Julie Hubik, Au.D., CCC-A - Doctor of Audiology & CEO of Cornerstone Audiology

Dr. Hubik is the owner and founder of one of West Texas' most trusted and professional hearing providers, Cornerstone Audiology. She received her bachelor of science degree in communication disorders as well as her doctorate of audiology from Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center (TTUHSC). In her youth, Dr. Hubik became interested in helping people with hearing loss to communicate more effectively and therefore pursued a degree in this field. Dr. Hubik was born and raised in Anton, Texas and appreciates working with the people of West Texas. She and her team are proud to serve the hearing needs of their community.