Woman scratching at psoriasis not realizing it can lead to hearing loss.

The word psoriasis commonly recalls recollections of people with skin problems like the ones on all those commercials. Psoriasis is more than skin issues and really impacts your overall health. Psoriasis is often misunderstood and minimized, due to a lack of knowledge of how psoriasis impacts sufferers as well as the serious conditions that can be related to this disorder. Although plaques on the skin are its most apparent symptom, they’re indicative of what psoriasis can do throughout the body: The risk of metabolic disorders that are increased by chronic irritation and cardiovascular disease.

New research reinforces the body of research linking another significant issue to psoriasis: Hearing loss. Published in The Journal of Rheumatology, this research considered connections between psoriatic arthritis, mental health, and hearing impairment. Psoriatic arthritis has an influence on the joints, and is a kind of psoriasis, causing inflammation, difficulty with movement, and discomfort. The tell-tale plaques may not be experienced by people who suffer from psoriatic arthritis.

In the same way as with rheumatoid arthritis (and like psoriasis), psoriatic arthritis is an autoimmune disease, the sufferer’s body is basically attacking its own healthy cells. But unlike rheumatoid arthritis, you could have psoriatic arthritis on only one knee because it’s asymmetrical, and it doesn’t only impact joints but leads to painfully swollen toes and fingers while it targets sufferer’s nails and eyes.

Based on the findings of this recent study, hearing may also be impacted by psoriatic arthritis. The study compared the self-reported hearing loss of people who suffer from psoriatic arthritis, people who have psoriasis but not psoriatic arthritis, and a big control group of people who had neither problem. They discovered that the group with psoriatic arthritis was more inclined to have hearing loss, and audiometric testing backed up the self-reports. Even when controlling for other risk considerations, people diagnosed with psoriatic arthritis were significantly more likely to have loss of hearing than either {the control group or psoriasis sufferers}.

But that’s not to say there’s no link between psoriasis, psoriatic arthritis and loss of hearing. A 2015 study found that there is a considerably higher risk, for people who have psoriasis, of getting sudden sensorineural hearing loss, also known as sudden deafness. With sudden sensorineural hearing loss, sufferer’s ability to hear diminishes substantially in three days or less. There are many potential causes for this, but experts hypothesize that individuals who have psoriasis are in greater danger because of the type of quick inflammation that happens during a flare-up of psoriasis symptoms. If this takes place in or near the cochlea, it may impede hearing. In many instances, treatments that help psoriasis symptoms might be used to deal with this kind of hearing loss, but hearing aids are often recommended when sudden deafness doesn’t react to other treatments.

If you have psoriatic arthritis or psoriasis, it’s essential to monitor your hearing. Plan regular hearing exams along with your yearly health-care appointments. Disease related to inflammation can lead to inner ear harm, which can result in hearing loss and troubles with balance. psoriatic arthritis and psoriasis are both also linked to depression and anxiety, both of which can be additionally aggravated by hearing loss. Hearing loss is a condition you want to catch early because neglected loss of hearing can lead to other health concerns such as dementia.

Recognition is key, and working with your doctors and periodically getting your hearing tested can assist you in keeping ahead of symptoms with timely intervention. You shouldn’t have to sacrifice your quality of life for psoriasis or for hearing loss, and having the right team by your side can make a huge difference.

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