There’s a chance that the word tinnitus gets thrown around a little too much. Not every momentary experience of an odd sound is a symptom of the condition. But the fact is that between 15 and 20 percent of Americans will actually experience tinnitus at some point in their life (hopefully only temporarily).
What is it? According to the Mayo Clinic “… it’s a symptom of an underlying condition, such as age-related hearing loss, ear injury, or a circulatory system disorder.”
And what’s the symptom? A persistent sound that not only won’t go away, but which can’t be sourced to anything in the exterior environment. Usually a ringing sound, but more rarely any variety of buzzes, clicks, hisses — and in extremely rare instances music — that needless to say can really get on the sufferer’s nerves.
Obviously, the best kind of tinnitus is the kind that quickly goes away on its own — which is quite often the case.
But not everyone is so lucky. If that’s the case, then consulting with a hearing health professional is required. As noted above, ultimately persistent tinnitus is only a manifestation of an underlying condition that needs to be addressed.
This doesn’t necessarily mean it can be cured. Permanent tinnitus isn’t curable, but there are ways to cope.
Among the ways that work best are trying not to spend too much in silence, since the sound becomes more prominent if it’s not competing with other inputs — so, having a radio or music in the background will help. Relaxation techniques such as meditating or yoga have helped many people suffering from tinnitus. Others have found that some specific foods or activities worsen the situation.
If you are experiencing tinnitus, contact us to schedule an appointment today.