Causes of Tinnitus
Tinnitus (literally “ringing” in Latin) is characterized by ringing, buzzing, or hissing sound that originates in the ear/head. Tinnitus can results in annoyance, stress, anxiety, and discomfort. Tinnitus is typically the precursor for hearing loss and is often exacerbated by stress.
Tinnitus can cause a multitude of underlying side effects, including fatigue, sleep problems, concentration difficulty, memory problems, depression, anxiety, and irritability. Though the condition is not necessarily medically serious, it can be quite debilitating.
What Causes Tinnitus?
In order to understand the causes of tinnitus it is important to understand the type of tinnitus you suffer from: objective vs. subjective. Subjective tinnitus refers to the ringing that is only audible to you while objective, can be audible by your physician or audiologist during testing.
Tinnitus can be caused by a variety of factors including medication to other underlying health conditions. The doctor/audiologist will take a thorough medical history, current medication list, perform diagnostic testing ( hearing examination) and other tests of the auditory system in order to best assess the nature/underlying cause of the tinnitus.
Possible causes of tinnitus include:
- Age-related hearing loss
- Exposure to loud noise
- Earwax buildup
- Abnormal bone growth in the ear
- Meniere's disease
- Stress and depression
- Head or neck injuries
- Benign tumor of the cranial nerve
- Long-term aspirin use
In some cases, the exact cause of the tinnitus may not be found but serious underlying conditions can be ruled out.
Is there a treatment for Tinnitus?
Depending on the cause tinnitus may sometimes resolve on its own. However, by addressing the underlying condition may be the best way to treat the tinnitus. To be frankly honest there is no treatment for tinnitus.Below is a list of "treatment" options for tinnitus, depending on the underlying causes
- Magnesium, zinc
- Vitamin B supplementation
- Homeopathic remedies
- Cranial-sacral therapy
- Hyperbaric oxygen
Tinnitus Retraining Therapy has been proven to distract the brain by providing competing stimulation and as a result affectively diminishing the severity of tinnitus. However, sound therapy will not get ride of the tinnitus altogether. Sound therapy involves the use of a sound-generating device as part of an overall program designed by an audiologist or hearing specialist that includes informational counseling and other activities to help ease the stress of tinnitus. Sound therapy includes an individual regimen of listening to specific sounds such as soothing tones or customized music through headphones to help re-focus the auditory system.
Tinnitus maskers are now build into most hearing devices and allow you to get help with both your hearing loss as well as lessen the severity of the tinnitus.
Schedule a tinnitus evaluation with our hearing expert today and we will customize a treatment solution for you depending on the degree/type/pitch of your tinnitus.