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Understanding Tinnitus

 

Tinnitus is defined as the perception of sound in the absence of an external sound source. It is commonly known as a head noise, ear noise, ringing in the ears. About 15% of people experience tinnitus symptoms.

Tinnitus is a noise that lasts at least 5 minutes. Shorter episodes of ear noise that goes away are considered normal and experienced by most of people. Tinnitus sounds are described in many various ways: crickets, wind, dripping water, buzz of fluorescent lights, pulsating tones, hissing, buzzing or ringing in the ear.

The intensity of tinnitus varies and can change over time: from “a background noise heard in quiet”, to “so loud that is heard over external sounds”.

  

Causes of Tinnitus

 

There are many different theories to explain what causes tinnitus – however it is still considered one of the big mysteries of the human ear.

High exposure to noise increases the risk of developing tinnitus. For example loud environments like concerts, music festivals and night clubs, or listening to personal music players at high volume.

Anxiety, fast pace of living or stress can also cause tinnitus problems.

“Ear noise” itself is not a disease, but can be a symptom of other health problems of both psychological or physical background.

It is often associated with hearing loss.

 


Tinnitus Treatment

 

The diagnosis of tinnitus requires a comprehensive medical examination, covering a review of medical history, physical check-up and audiological evaluation, including tinnitus assessment tests.

Currently there is no approved drug specifically to cure tinnitus. Most of treatment options concentrate on relieving the symptoms and making the tinnitus less distressing.

Common methods are based on enriching the sound environment, via hearing aid fitting or providing additional sound sources (noise generators, sound libraries), that direct attention away from tinnitus. These are typically complemented by some form of counseling.

Therapies may also incorporate educational elements like relaxation techniques and psychological therapy, or alternative treatment such as acupuncture.

 Call today and ask about our tinnitus evaluation and what treatments are avaliable.

770-947-6362