Researchers think inflammation in blood vessels could be to blame, since the ear would be prone to that kind of damage, reports Flagstaff Business News.

Hearing health professionals know that circulatory issues can cause hearing loss. Research indicates that people with heart disease are 50% more likely to have hearing impairment. According to the American Diabetes Association, patients with diabetes are twice as likely to have hearing loss as those individuals who do not. Smokers are more likely to develop hearing loss because of the depleted oxygen levels in the inner ear. Untreated high blood pressure can also contribute to hearing loss and tinnitus, also known as ringing in the ears.