Tinnitus Ringing In Ears
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Tinnitus

Do you Hear ringing, chirping, hissing or buzzing?

Tinnitus (pronounced ti-ni-tis), or ringing in the ears, is the sensation of hearing ringing, buzzing, hissing, chirping, whistling, or other sounds. Tinnitus is the perception of sound occurring in the ear(s) and/or the head when no external sound is present. It is not a disease, rather a symptom of an underlying malfunction that occurs somewhere along the auditory pathway. While tinnitus typically cannot be objectively measured, it is not imagined.

Tinnitus (pronounced ti-ni-tis), or ringing in the ears, is the sensation of hearing ringing, buzzing, hissing, chirping, whistling, or other sounds. Tinnitus is the perception of sound occurring in the ear(s) and/or the head when no external sound is present. It is not a disease, rather a symptom of an underlying malfunction that occurs somewhere along the auditory pathway. While tinnitus typically cannot be objectively measured, it is not imagined.

What is the relationship between hearing loss and tinnitus?

Although tinnitus does not always co-occur with hearing loss, tinnitus is more prevalent among individuals with impaired hearing than it is among the normal hearing population. Tinnitus can occur with any degree, cause, or type of hearing loss.

Research studies have revealed some interesting relationships between tinnitus and hearing loss that may be helpful for the treatment process. There tends to be a strong association between the pitch of a patient’s tinnitus and the frequency range of his/her abnormal hearing thresholds. Further, the tinnitus pitch tends to correspond to the frequency region in which the audiogram exhibits a steep increase in hearing threshold of 40dB or more.

 

Research has shown that the severity of the tinnitus is not related to the severity of the hearing loss. Also, changes in hearing loss and changes in tinnitus seem to occur independently of each other. Tinnitus can worsen or lessen in severity without any change in hearing and vice versa. We do know that, regardless of age, as hearing loss increases, the likelihood for the presence of tinnitus increases.

 

 

Are you experiencing Tinnitus? Not Sure?

The most common cause of tinnitus is damage and loss of the tiny sensory hair cells in the cochlea of the inner ear. This tends to happen as people age, and it can also result from prolonged exposure to excessively loud noise. Hearing loss may coincide with tinnitus.

What are the causes of Tinnitus?

Noise Trama:

One of the most common causes of tinnitus is noise trauma. Noise trauma can be due to repeated, unprotected exposure to loud sounds over a long period of time (e.g., working in a factory, working in construction, musicians, lawn care) or from a one-time exposure to a close range, very loud sound (e.g., gunshot, firecracker, explosion). The damage that noise inflicts on the auditory system may be permanent and can result in the emergence of tinnitus immediately after exposure or gradually over time.

Disease or Health Problems:

A number of diseases or health problems that are not directly related to the hearing system list tinnitus as a symptom. These include: cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure, underactive or overactive thyroid, fibromyalgia, multiple sclerosis, migraines, and diabetes. In some cases, tinnitus may even be the first sign of the problem.

Medications:

There are approximately 500 over-the-counter and prescribed medications that cite tinnitus as a possible side effect. Most people do not experience tinnitus as a result of taking medication but for those who do, the experience is often temporary and subsides within a few days or weeks once the use of the drug is discontinued, though this is not a guarantee. Common medications that cause tinnitus include: anti-inflammatories (e.g., aspirin, ibuprofen), antibiotics (e.g., azithromycin, tetracycline, doxycycline), antidepressants (e.g., Abilify, Celexa, Prozac), antihistamines, and chemotherapy drugs.

Hearing Loss:

There are a number of pathologies of the outer and middle ear that can cause hearing loss as well as tinnitus (e.g., ear wax, middle ear infections, otosclerosis). In many cases, after outer or middle ear pathologies have been medically addressed, tinnitus may be alleviated. For inner ear pathologies (e.g., presbycusis, Ménière’s Disease, sudden sensorineural hearing loss), few surgical/medical options are available, and thus the hearing loss, and tinnitus, if present, will likely persist.

Head and Neck Injury:

Individuals who experience some form of head or neck injury/trauma often report the onset of tinnitus following the incident. Common head or neck traumas include skull fractures, whiplash, or a blow to the head. Individuals who experience temporomandibular disorders or other neck/jaw problems are also prone to experiencing tinnitus.

Is there a cure for tinnitus?

There are many products and treatments on the market that claim to cure tinnitus. However, at the present time, there is NO CURE for tinnitus. It is important that patients are aware of this fact. But it is even more important that they know all hope is not lost! A number of effective treatment options exist that can manage and provide relief from tinnitus.

You Can Get Your Life Back!

The first step in treating tinnitus is appropriately diagnosing and measuring tinnitus.

Your evaluation* will be simple and painless. Our specialist will check for excessive earwax, blockages, or any medical issues with your ear canal or eardrum and perform an audiometric evaluation*. During this test*, you will be asked to respond to a series of sounds and beeps at varying volume levels and frequencies. If the test* determines you have tinnitus, we will discuss our findings and go over all your options.

Are there lifestyle factors that can aggravate tinnitus?

Are there lifestyle factors that can aggravate tinnitus? There are a number of lifestyle factors and dietary considerations, often noted in the research literature, which may aggravate a patient’s tinnitus experience.

Lifestyle modifications may help minimize the unfavorable effects of tinnitus. It is recommended that patients discuss any dietary, medical, and/or lifestyle changes with their primary care physician before implementing them.

Common lifestyle factors include:

• Stress or fatigue

• Consistent noise exposure

• Use of aspirin in high doses

• Alcohol consumption

• High caffeine consumption

• Tobacco

• High sodium intake

Schedule Your Free Hearing Test*

“FACT: Adults with untreated hearing loss are more likely to develop dementia”