Tinnitus is a symptom that indicates a problem with the auditory system and not a disease. The auditory system includes the ears, nerves that connect the brain to the inner ear, and portions of the brain that process sound.
Tinnitus sufferers often describe a ringing, buzzing, clicking, hissing, or roaring in the ears that does not come from their environment. Additionally, no one else hears the persistent noises adding to the frustration of the condition.
People with mild tinnitus may only experience it as an annoyance, but severe tinnitus can greatly decrease quality of life. Problems associated with severe tinnitus include cause hearing loss, interrupted sleep, and difficulty concentrating at work.
Although tinnitus has no cure, some people have symptoms of it for only a short time and it never returns. For others, tinnitus is persistent or it returns repeatedly after periods of remission.
Audiologists don’t always know what causes people to develop tinnitus, but the most typical reason is noise-induced hearing loss. The goal with tinnitus treatment is to manage sound perception so the patient experiences it as less disruptive.
Examples of Tinnitus Treatment Methods
People that developed tinnitus due to sound-induced hearing loss can benefit from hearing aids. Not only will hearing aids amplify sound, but they also reduce the intrusive noises of tinnitus at the same time. Other potentially promising tinnitus treatment options include:
- Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT): Dealing with chronic tinnitus can cause depression, anxiety, or other mental health issues. CBT helps people accept their tinnitus by changing the way they think about it. This change often empowers individuals previously consumed by the condition.
- Reduce stress: Although stress does not cause tinnitus, it can result in more severe or frequent flare-ups. People with tinnitus should take care to not take on more than they can handle and to let go of anything they cannot control. Drinking too much alcohol to deal with stress can also worsen tinnitus symptoms because it increases the size of blood vessels in the ear to let in more sound. Excess caffeine or nicotine can also have this effect.
- Remove impacted ear wax: A thorough cleaning of the ears to dislodge any impacted ear wax can help to immediately improve the symptoms of tinnitus.
- White noise machine: These machines counteract the irritating sounds of tinnitus with calmer sounds such as ocean waves or falling rain. Tinnitus sufferers who have trouble sleeping may want to buy pillow speakers with the white noise machine to have the gentle sounds pipe into their ears all night long. Air conditioners, dehumidifiers, and fans can also provide a gentler sound to offset the ringing, buzzing, and other unwanted noises of tinnitus.
New Hearing Devices Can Improve Quality of Life for Tinnitus Sufferers
Numerous new hearing devices offer renewed hope for tinnitus sufferers. Sound-reducing intelligent earbuds such as IQbuds MAX enable users to calibrate their earbuds to own hearing profile.
Paired with a smartphone application, these hearing enhancing earbuds boast a world on/world off option. This feature enables users to mute or amplify sound. Moreover, users can enhance speech while blocking out background noises that can make it difficult to hear.
The earbuds have shown promise and excellent results for tinnitus sufferers. This is especially true for people who had lived with tinnitus for years. Many of those running out of hope may now find long-lasting relief.