COVID-19 social distancing is really helpful in preventing further infections as the global pandemic continues. However, experts said that the activity can also negatively affect a specific hearing condition.

COVID-19 Social Distancing Might Affect a Hearing Condition; Experts Claim It Aggravates Tinnitus
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People walk past the social distancing markings on the ground at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park on April 11, 2020 in London, England. Public Easter events have been cancelled across the country, with the government urging the public to respect lockdown measures by celebrating the holiday in their homes. Over 1.5 million people across the world have been infected with the COVID-19 coronavirus, with over 7,000 fatalities recorded in the United Kingdom.

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The Independent UK reported that researchers claim that social distancing can aggravate tinnitus. NIH explain that it is a hearing condition that causes noises, such as buzzing, ringing, or hissing sounds in the ears.

They claim that social distancing worsens 46% of the study's respondents who suffer from the hearing condition. Experts said that this is because the activity has led to significant changes to lifestyle and work.

"Some of the changes brought about by Covid-19 appear to have had a negative impact on the lives of people with Tinnitus and participants in this study reported that Covid-19 symptoms are worsening or, in some cases, even initiating Tinnitus and hearing loss," said Dr. Eldre Beukes, the study's lead author.

What is Tinnitus?

The National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD) explained that tinnitus is not a disease. It is a symptom that warns the body that something is wrong in the auditory system.

COVID-19 Social Distancing Might Affect a Hearing Condition; Experts Claim It Aggravates Tinnitus
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New Orleans mayor C. Ray Nagin plugs his ear while talking on his phone during the Hands around the Dome ceremony August 26, 2006 in New Orleans, Louisiana. People held hands and attempted to make a human chain around the Superdome in honor of those who lost their lives during Hurricane Katrina and suffered when evacuated to the Superdome.

Earwax blocking the ear canal can easily cause ringing and hissing sounds. However, experts warned that the symptom can also lead to a number of health conditions such as Ménière's disease, brain tumors, thyroid abnormalities, hormonal changes in women, and noise-induced hearing loss.

COVID-19 symptoms can trigger Tinnitus

Aside from social distancing, researchers also explained that some of the study's participants claimed that their condition was triggered by the onset of COVID-19 symptoms.

The study, which is supported by the American Tinnitus Association and British Tinnitus Association, suggests that the hearing condition can be a long term coronavirus symptom in some cases. Stress can also affect the health issue.

Experts claimed that stress factors during the global pandemic, such as financial concerns, trouble sleeping, loneliness, and fears of catching the viral disease, triggers Tinnitus in 32% of the study's respondents.

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Written by: Giuliano de Leon.

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