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

When you think about psoriasis, you most likely recall all those commercials depicted people with skin issues. Psoriasis affects your general health and not only your skin. Psoriasis is commonly 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. Psoriasis causes reactions through the whole body even though skin plaques are the most recognizable sign: The risk of metabolic problems that are increased by chronic inflammation and cardiovascular disease.

Psoriasis is also connected to another problem according to a different recent study: Hearing loss. Published in The Journal of Rheumatology, this research looked at links between psoriatic arthritis, mental health, and hearing impairment. Psoriatic arthritis is a form of psoriasis where inflammation is concentrated around the joints, causing discomfort, difficulty with movement, and inflammation. Afflicted individuals may also suffer from psoriasis, but with psoriatic arthritis, it’s conceivable to have irritation without also experiencing the common plaques.

In the same way as with rheumatoid arthritis (and similar to psoriasis), psoriatic arthritis is an autoimmune illness, the sufferer’s body is basically attacking its own healthy tissue. But as opposed to rheumatoid arthritis, you might have psoriatic arthritis on only one knee because it’s asymmetrical, and that aside from joints, it often impacts sufferer’s nails (causing painfully swollen toes and fingers) and eyes.

Based on the findings of this recent study, inflammation caused by psoriatic arthritis could also impact hearing. The study compared the self-reported hearing loss of individuals who suffer from psoriatic arthritis, people who have psoriasis but not psoriatic arthritis, and a large control group of people who had neither condition. They discovered that loss of hearing was more likely to be documented by the group that had psoriasis, and those reports were backed by audiometric testing. Even when controlling for other risk considerations, psoriatic arthritis sufferers were significantly more prone to have hearing loss than either {psoriasis sufferers or the control group}.

But that’s not to say there’s no connection between psoriasis, psoriatic arthritis and loss of hearing. A 2015 study discovered that there is a considerably higher danger, for people who have psoriasis, of getting sudden sensorineural hearing loss, or sudden deafness. With sudden sensorineural hearing loss, sufferer’s ability to hear diminishes considerably in three days or less. There are various possible causes for this, but scientists think that sudden psoriasis flare-ups could be to blame. The hearing may be impaired if this happens around or in the cochlea. In many instances, treatments that help psoriasis symptoms may be used to address this kind of hearing loss, but hearing aids are often recommended when other interventions don’t appear to be helping.

It’s worthwhile to monitor your hearing if you suffer from psoriasis or psoriatic arthritis. Schedule your yearly healthcare appointment along with regular hearing exams. The inflammation due to these diseases can lead to inner ear damage, which can result in hearing loss as well as troubles with balance. psoriatic arthritis and psoriasis are both also linked with depression and anxiety, which can both exacerbate hearing loss. Loss of hearing is a condition you want to catch early because neglected loss of hearing can result in other health concerns such as dementia.

With early intervention, you can stay in front of the symptoms by getting your hearing tested frequently and cooperating with your doctor, knowledge is key. Neither hearing loss nor psoriasis should influence you to sacrifice your quality of life, and all the difference is having the right team by your side.