If you have tinnitus, you can understand how frustrating and worrisome it is for the approximately 50 million Americans who also suffer from it.
Tinnitus is a condition where you can hear sounds that aren’t there. It might be a buzzing, chirping, humming, ringing, or hissing sound that never seems to go away. It can be intermittent, but often it is with you non-stop.
Restless nights are common, and tinnitus can also increase your anxiety and stress levels, which only seems to make the tinnitus worse.
However, it is worth noting that 50% of tinnitus sufferers do find that their tinnitus fades over time.
To help those in our Midland communities who are experiencing troubling tinnitus, I want to explain the common causes of tinnitus and explore some ways you can ease its symptoms and gain back control of your life.
Type Of Tinnitus
There are two types of tinnitus – subjective and objective.
Subjective tinnitus means that only the person with tinnitus can hear it. It is usually caused by problems within the outer, middle, or inner ear. Sometimes sufferers may have an issue with their hearing nerves, or the brain cannot understand the nerve signals as sound.
Common causes can include compacted earwax, stress/anxiety, drug use, head trauma, and neurological illnesses.
Objective tinnitus is a much rarer condition. In this case, both the patient with tinnitus and their doctor can hear the tinnitus sounds.
Causes can include blood vessel problems, muscle contractions, and issues with the small bones that are located within the middle ear.
It is important to note that tinnitus is not a condition in itself but rather a side effect of another illness or problem. Sometimes tinnitus sufferers will also experience hearing loss, vertigo, and ear pressure.
Although there is no cure for tinnitus, there are several ways to reduce the symptoms and find relief.
Cutting back on your caffeine intake, as well as cigarettes, can make a difference. Caffeine and nicotine are both nerve stimulants and can increase your anxiety levels. This can lead to your tinnitus becoming louder and more persistent.
You may want to ask your doctor about any medications you are currently taking. Sometimes, tinnitus can be a side effect, and just by changing your medication, the tinnitus will disappear.
Additionally, some sufferers have tried medication to ease their tinnitus symptoms. Results may vary, but this is definitely an option to explore.
Other treatment options focus on distracting yourself from tinnitus. It might seem impossible, but it can be done. This method depends on creating other sounds to focus on or complete relaxation.
Often simply running a fan in the background or playing the radio is all the distraction one needs. Or you could try a sound source generator.
Many apps are available to download – they play random nature or environmental sounds. By focusing on them, your tinnitus will fade into the background.
Some people like to wear tinnitus maskers. These are small technical devices that fit into a hearing aid case, and they are worn like a hearing aid. They play various sounds that are different from your tinnitus sounds.
With biofeedback training, you learn to deeply relax and control different body parts. This can be helpful to know in stressful situations where your tinnitus might increase.
Let Us Help You Treat Tinnitus
At All About Hearing – our focus is your hearing health by providing support, advice, and help to educate those that have hearing challenges, whether yourself or a loved one, to support them in the decision to have their hearing tested.
Through a “Family Level of Care,” we take the fear and stigma away from hearing care and help people in a loving, caring, and friendly environment.
If you are concerned about your likelihood of getting tinnitus, or you have tinnitus and are struggling with it, we are here to help you.
All About Hearing is the hearing care experts in Midland, Texas. We are committed to caring for your hearing and overall wellbeing, ensuring that you get the most out of life. To begin your journey to better hearing, phone us today at 432-689-2220.