Touch Star, based in Eden Prairie, is a global leader in the hearing industry and specializes in creating products to help people hear better. It also tracks trends in hearing loss and monitors it closely.
“About 7% of people who have had COVID report hearing loss after having COVID-19,” said Dr. Dave Fabry, CIO of Starkey.
Fabry went on to say that another 7% reported symptoms of vertigo and about 15% had ringing in the ears, also known as tinnitus.
“Although this is a significant number [of people], and I think it deserves more study, ”Fabry said.
He added that about 10% of the American population has hearing loss, which makes these studies all the more important for knowing how closely the virus has to do with hearing problems.
Fabry says getting your hearing checked may help researchers in these studies. He says it’s ideal for people to have their hearing checked before a diagnosis of COVID-19 – it will give people a better understanding of whether or not their hearing is affected if they are diagnosed and recovering from COVID-19.
“Go see an audiologist or hearing care professional,” added Fabry. “It takes about a few moments and we can quickly see whether or not you have any symptoms of hearing loss that may be related to COVID. “
When asked how the industry is monitoring any possible connection to the COVID-19 vaccine, Fabry said it was very important to separate the virus and the vaccine when discussing this.
“Fortunately, we haven’t seen any strong indications that the vaccine is linked in any way to a high risk of hearing, hearing loss, balance issues or tinnitus,” Fabry said.
After a hiatus due to the pandemic, Starkey reported that he had an increased interest in hearing checks.
From being more isolated, from working from home in a less noisy environment to masks preventing the ability to read lips, Fabry thinks the increase in interest is probably due to people listening more. of their hearing problems.