What You Need to Know About Tinnitus
One of the most frustrating conditions that people have to deal with is tinnitus. For most sufferers, it's just an annoyance, a noise in the background that isn't causing harm but does bug them through the day. For the rest, it's a constant and seemingly never-ending noise that goes from a distracting background sound to a devastating and isolating tune. It's important to understand that tinnitus is not a disease, and your audiologist will confirm that fact. However, tinnitus is a symptom of an otherwise underlying issue. The noise in your head is not imaginary, so if you are concerned about a buzzing or ringing, you need to seek some help as soon as you can.
Tinnitus is very common
The fact is that tinnitus affects more people than you think. It doesn't affect everyone in the same way, but it is something that needs looking at. It affects those who:
- Are exposed to loud music for long periods
- Work on construction sites with loud machinery
- Wax buildup in the ear
- Sinus and ear infections
- Head and neck injuries
- Depression and stress
- Acoustic neuroma
The exact causes of tinnitus are still unknown, but most of the time it's associated with a hearing loss. It's for this reason that you should consult your audiologist if you suspect that you are suffering from tinnitus.
Tinnitus is treatable, but may not be curable
Most of the time, people are told that tinnitus is something they just have to live with and they won't ever move past it. This is untrue. There are treatments like sound therapies and hearing aids that will relieve the tinnitus, and while neither of these is a cure, they are still effective ways to treat the tinnitus you are experiencing.
Two types of tinnitus
You may not be aware that there are two different types of tinnitus: objective, which is rare and subjective tinnitus. Your audiologist should be able to tell you which type you are dealing with and help you to find a treatment that works for you. Objective tinnitus is very rare, and it's in these cases where your audiologist could perceive an actual sound coming from the ear canal. This is something that happens if there is a muscle spasm that can cause clicking in the middle ear. Subjective tinnitus occurs when the sufferer only hears the noise.
When you should call an audiologist
As tinnitus is experienced differently by different people, you should see an audiologist if you regularly hear sounds like buzzing or ringing in your ears. If you are only experiencing the sound in one ear instead of both, this is particularly important, as there could be a severe underlying issue. A simple ear examination can help your audiologist work out what should be done next.
You deserve to live in comfort, and the first step to that is getting the right help. Take your time, get to know what noise you are hearing and how it's affecting you, and you'll be in the right place to get some help.