Hearing & Balance Doctors

How Are Your Ears Involved In Balance?

How Are Your Ears Involved In Balance?

Your ears have a unique relationship with the rest of your body and overall health.

Poor hearing can lead to an array of problems that extend well beyond not being able to hear.

Conditions such as dementia, Alzheimer’s disease, anxiety, and depression are a few examples of what can happen if poor hearing is left untreated.

Unfortunately, that’s not all that can happen. Your hearing is directly tied to your sense of balance.

In some cases, hearing issues can cause nausea and even vertigo, making it difficult to eat and/or sleep.

Let’s take a closer look at this condition and how our team of audiologists can help.

What Is The Correlation Between Your Ears And Your Balance?

Your inner ear does more than just hear for you; it also helps control your balance.

Within your ear are various pathways of bone and tissue that your body uses to transmit signals to the brain.

This includes the semicircular canals, the otolithic organs, and the cochlea.

The cochlea is a snail-shaped structure within your ear that protects various canals that are referred to as the vestibular system. This system is where your balance is coordinated.

Within this system are two sacs of fluid that function as a carpenter’s level. As you move your body, these sacs send signals via tiny hairs to the brain, which in turn instruct other parts of the body on how to stay upright or move side to side, etc.

Holding on to railings, stumbling on flat surfaces, spinning sensations, or floating sensations are all signs of what could be inner ear problems.

Even if these sensations pass in a short time, it could still mean that there is an underlying problem that, if not treated, will continue to progress.

Problems like this are serious since a bad fall or feelings of dizziness while driving can cause permanent injury or worse.

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Your Balance May Be Affected By One Of These

We know that your balance is directly related to your ear health.

If your health lapses and you find yourself dealing with balance issues, then you may have contracted one of these disorders.

Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV) — Often referred to as positional vertigo, this is usually the result of aging or a head injury.

Labyrinthitis — An infection that affects the inner ear, which leads to hearing loss, tinnitus, feelings of vertigo, and nausea.

Vestibular neuronitis — This is labyrinthitis but without hearing loss.

Mal de Debarquement syndrome (MdDS) — Creates a feeling that you are still moving even after you’ve left a vehicle, boat, or plane.

Meniere’s disease — Results from a buildup of pressure within the inner ear labyrinth, leading to hearing loss, vertigo, and tinnitus.

Perilymph fistula — After head injuries or surgery, this condition occurs at birth, during infections, or after scuba diving. This is a result of inner ear fluid leaking into the middle ear.

What Can I Do?

The audiologists at Hearing & Balance Doctors are trusted by thousands of patients throughout Nevada and Utah.

If you experience or witness any of these symptoms with yourself or a loved one, then we are here to help.

Your first step is to schedule a hearing assessment with one of our audiologists. At this meeting, we can discuss the specific situation you are dealing with and how to improve it.

We have the pleasure of helping incredible people to continue to hear the life that they love and bring their differences to the world.

Do you know somebody that needs to see this? Why not share it?

Dr. Richard Luekenga

Dr. Luekenga opened Hearing & Balance Doctors of Utah in 2005. Since that time he has been dedicated to creating state-of-the-art facilities filled with the latest technology along with the most qualified and caring hearing healthcare team. He received his Doctor of Audiology from the University of Louisville School of Medicine. His doctorate is supported by his B.A. at Utah State University, clinical fellowship at Bountiful Hearing Center and further clinical experience at the Veteran’s Administration Hospital, IHC Hearing and Balance Center, The Kosair Children’s Hospital, Heuser Hearing Institute (Deaf Oral School), and Avada Hearing and Balance Center, to name a few. With this long list of experience, it is clear that Dr. Luekenga is very passionate about good hearing and is well-versed in the advances of hearing aid technology. He is equally as passionate about helping patients that feel off-balance, dizzy, lightheaded, or unsteady, and understands the need these patients have to get back on their feet! Additionally, he provides counseling and therapy for patients who experience tinnitus (ringing or buzzing in their ears).

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