Unfortunately, many physicians and healthcare professionals tell their patients that nothing can be done about tinnitus or ringing in the ears. That is simply not true. At Davis Family Hearing, we specialize in treating these annoying internal sounds as well as hearing loss.
What Is Tinnitus?
Tinnitus is often a symptom of an underlying hearing problem and causes a person to hear phantom sounds. It’s most commonly described as ringing in the ears, but it can also take the form of:
You may hear sounds in one or both ears. They can be constant or come and go.
If you’ve ever heard a high-pitched noise in your ears after going to a concert, you’ve likely experienced mild, short-term tinnitus.
What Causes Tinnitus?
There are many possible causes of tinnitus. They include:
- Earwax blockages
- Middle ear disorders
- Damaged inner ear hairs
- Medication, and
- Trauma to the auditory nerve
Our doctors work with tinnitus patients to determine the cause of their symptoms and the most effective tinnitus treatment solution for them.
Is Tinnitus Serious?
Tinnitus can be serious for some people. It can cause anxiety and depression and disable someone to the point that they cannot work anymore.
Can Tinnitus Be Healed?
Currently, there is no singular cure for tinnitus, but there are many treatments available that could help, depending on the cause of your symptoms. These treatments include:
- Hearing aids
- Tinnitus maskers, and
- Tinnitus treatment therapy
As with all our medical devices, Davis Family Hearing offers a 30-day trial so our patients can feel comfortable finding the best solution for them.
Can Tinnitus Lead to Hearing Loss?
Tinnitus does not cause hearing loss because it is a symptom, not a health condition. That being said, a significant portion of people who have severe tinnitus also have underlying hearing loss. In many cases treating the hearing loss causes tinnitus symptoms to subside.
Will My Tinnitus Ever Go Away?
If you have only developed tinnitus recently, it is possible it could disappear on its own over time. About 20 percent of people experience tinnitus at some point in their lives, and only a small subsection of this group goes on to have persistent, chronic tinnitus.
Are There Any New Treatments or Cures for Tinnitus?
Right now, researchers at the University of Michigan are working on a method called “targeted bimodal auditory-somatosensory stimulation.” Their device delivers noise through earbuds while administering tiny electric shocks to the cheek and neck to better regulate certain parts of the brain responsible for tinnitus.
While early trials are promising, there are still far more studies to be done before we know if this treatment is viable and offers long-term results for tinnitus sufferers.
How Do I Fall Asleep With Tinnitus?
Tinnitus symptoms often worsen at night because the brain isn’t preoccupied with other sounds, like voices, traffic or electronics. As a result, phantom noises seem louder than usual. This can be very frustrating and prevent you from getting a decent night’s sleep.
A simple fix is to introduce some light sounds to your sleeping environment, such as a whirring fan, calming music or white noise. This can dull the tinnitus enough for you to fall asleep.
How Can I Get Relief From Tinnitus?
There are some steps you can take at home to relieve tinnitus or combat its effects, such as:
- Reducing caffeine, nicotine and alcohol intake
- Eating healthy
- Getting plenty of sleep
Sit down with a board-certified audiologist if your symptoms persist. At Davis Family Hearing, we can conduct a hearing assessment to check for underlying hearing loss, complete a physical examination of your ears and recommend possible treatments that will reduce or alleviate your tinnitus. Call (352) 666-8910 to schedule your appointment today.