The symptoms of tinnitus include the buzzing, clicking, ringing, roaring, or whooshing noises that are heard when there are no external sound sources. It can cause distress and distract you from your daily life. It’s important to seek help and monitor your hearing health before it worsens.
Nearly 15-20% of Americans have experienced tinnitus at least one time. While it can happen to anyone, it’s pervasive among adults and seniors. There is currently no definite cure for tinnitus, so taking preventative cautions is crucial.
What are the signs of tinnitus?
As previously mentioned a buzzing, clicking, ringing, roaring, or whooshing noise may only be heard by you. There are various frequencies and tones to the noise. If you notice tinnitus, write down what you are experiencing. Keep a journal to record when you started hearing these noises, in what situations/environments you notice the sounds and anything else you feel is worth noting. Bring this information with you when you talk to your hearing instrument specialist about treatment options.
Discuss the sounds you are hearing with the people around you, who can provide accurate assessments if you think you are experiencing tinnitus.
What causes tinnitus?
The main causes of tinnitus are due to underlying conditions, such as injuries to the ears or poor blood circulation. Think about possible reasons that brought about the symptoms. This will help your hearing healthcare provider give you proper treatment options.
Frequent exposure to loud noises, or even just one exposure to a very loud noise, can induce tinnitus symptoms. The tiny hair cells in the inner ear can become damaged from the sounds, which leads to false impulses that are transmitted to the brain. This is what causes tinnitus.
Aging, and the hearing health problems related to aging, can cause tinnitus. Diabetes, unhealthy blood vessels, autoimmune diseases, changes in bone growth throughout the ears, muscle spasms, ear infections or obstructions, head, neck, or ear injuries could also cause tinnitus. Like with any health condition, detecting the problem early will lead to earlier treatment, which may help reduce any serious impacts.
Tinnitus is common in men, the older population, regular smokers, and alcoholics who are regularly exposed to loud noises. Take your job environment into consideration, and wear ear protection when working under loud conditions. Any underlying health conditions such as arthritis and obesity should be carefully monitored.
What are the impacts of tinnitus?
The frequency of tinnitus is different for everyone. Most people who experience tinnitus find it to be distressing and bothersome. They may suffer from fatigue, headaches, depression, stress, an inability to focus, problems with accomplishing tasks, and disruption in their sleep routines.
What preventative measures should be taken?
Always carry around small earplugs or noise-canceling earmuffs if you are going to work in a noisy area. For example, if you are employed in an industrial workplace that has loud machinery make sure you are wearing earplugs. Your employer should also be able to provide the proper ear protection in these situations.
Avoid overconsumption of alcohol, caffeine, and nicotine. Make sure you are exercising and following a healthy diet. This will help with your overall health, which will help your hearing health.
Listen to music and media at lower volumes. If you need to turn the volume up, to the point where others complain about the level you should seek help for your hearing.
What treatment options are available?
Hearing aids that feature a masking option may be used to treat your tinnitus and hearing loss. Contact us at Pure Sound Hearing to set up an appointment for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.