Temporarily Lose Hearing After Orgasm? You're Not Alone
- It's possible to lose your hearing for a few moments after orgasm.
- A rush of certain hormones that widen your blood vessels and increase blood flow to your ears is a common cause.
- Your hearing should return to normal shortly, but if it doesn't, check with a doctor.
Male orgasms are associated with a host of benefits, from a reduced risk of prostate cancer to improved heart health. They can lead to some rather surprising changes in the body as well. Ever heard of losing your hearing after an orgasm?
Here's what's going on and why your hearing (most likely) will return to normal in short order.
Is it common to lose your hearing after an orgasm?
It happens to some people, said Peter Byrom, a National Health Service-trained audiologist and the owner of Peter Byrom Audiology in Sheffield, United Kingdom.
Those hearing changes could range from ringing in your ears, a "roaring sound" associated with blood rushing through your vessels, or even losing your hearing completely for a short time.
If you notice some changes to your hearing after you come, don't panic. Providing it goes back to normal shortly afterward, there is probably a perfectly logical explanation for why your hearing can be impacted by orgasm.
What are the reasons why you might lose your hearing after orgasm?
There isn't one known reason for someone's hearing to change with an orgasm. Even so, minor hearing changes, such as muffled sounds or a sensation of fullness in the ears, are common, according to Byrom. And they are considered normal after an orgasm and typically subside within a short period of time.
Other changes that could happen include tinnitus (ringing in your ears) or feeling like you lost your hearing completely.
Some individuals may experience a temporary decrease in hearing sensitivity or a sensation of muffled sounds post-orgasm, said Stewart Parnacott, C.R.N.A., a Houston-based certified registered nurse anesthetist.
Again, those changes should be temporary, although they could last several minutes. They can be different from person to person—even from sexual experience to sexual experience.
"It's essential to remember that each person's response to sexual activity can be unique, and these variations in hearing changes are part of the body's natural physiological response," Parnacott said.
It's not fully known what causes hearing changes after an orgasm, Byrom said. Likely, it is due to the release of certain hormones and the associated changes in blood flow that impact the blood vessels in the ear.
As the blood vessels near your ear constrict or dilate, the blood flows through faster, and because those vessels are near or in your ears, you will then hear that rush of blood.
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For instance, hormones such as adrenaline and vasopressin that are released during sexual activity and orgasm can lead to changes in blood vessel dilation and constriction. The release of those hormones can lead to increased blood supply to the ears and other sensory organs, Parnacott said.
The physical process behind possible hearing changes after an orgasm involves the regulation of blood flow in the body. Adrenaline and oxytocin lead to vasodilation, or the widening of blood vessels, that will increase blood circulation to various parts of the body, including the ears.
"These changes in blood flow might affect the inner ear's sensitive structures, potentially causing hearing changes," Byrom said.
Some people will have more sensitive hearing thanks to individual variances in inner ear structure and anatomy, according to a 2021 study published in Biometrics. The hormone and blood flow connection can change how your ear physically hears sounds.
It found that adrenaline can briefly change the composition of the fluids in the inner ear where sounds are transmitted to the brain. That fluid alteration could potentially cause a temporary change in hearing.
Age plays a large role in your hearing, and changes to hearing—including an increase in tinnitus—are common as you get older.
Finally, hormonal fluctuations can influence blood pressure levels and may contribute to hearing changes.
"These hormone and blood flow changes are totally normal and necessary to get you to the big finish, and the associated hearing changes are probably normal too," Grischow said.
Is losing your hearing after orgasm dangerous?
"In most cases, temporary hearing changes after orgasms are not dangerous and tend to resolve on their own," Byrom said.
If your hearing changes stick around, however, and if you experience any sudden or persistent hearing changes, you should see your doctor, he said.
There is a chance that hearing changes with orgasm might be an early indicator of another underlying complication, according to a 2021 study in Scientific Reports.
That study suggests a connection between erectile dysfunction (ED) and tinnitus.
If you are experiencing regular complications getting or maintaining erections, as well as ringing in your ears, it may be worth having a conversation with your doctor to get evaluated for ED and discuss treatment options.
Another indication it could be time to talk to your doctor? If you are having hearing changes after orgasms along with symptoms such dizziness, pain or imbalance, Byrom said.
The bottom line
Fortunately, if you are having temporary hearing changes with orgasm (and aren't participating in sexual experiences in an unnaturally loud environment that could cause hearing damage), you likely have nothing to worry about. Hormones, age or just your own blood vessel anatomy are to blame.
When in doubt, though, reach out.
"Permanent hearing damage as a direct result of sex is extremely rare, and consensual sexual activity is not known to cause permanent hearing impairment," Byrom said. "If you're concerned about your hearing health during or after sexual activity, it's best to consult a medical professional."