What do Rush Limbaugh and William Shatner all have in common? It isn’t just their celebrity status. They all have tinnitus or noises in the ear.

 

The signs of tinnitus

The experience of tinnitus varies from person to person. They may be loud or soft and sound like hissing, ringing, popping, buzzing, humming or pulsing.  Many describe their tinnitus as constant while others find it intermittently.  Tinnitus may occur in one or both ears and some patients describe it as sounding like it is in the middle of their head.

 

The causes of tinnitus

One of the most common causes of tinnitus is prolonged, repeated exposure to loud sounds. Bob Dylan, Chris Martin and Peter Townshend all report tinnitus, likely as a result to many years of listening to loud music.  Gun fire and mechanical noise are also likely to cause damage to the inner ear which may also result in tinnitus as well.  Other causes of tinnitus include head trauma, drug use, impacted ear wax, hearing loss, and certain diseases of the nervous system.

 

Can tinnitus be treated?

Tinnitus management is our goal for patients who are suffering from disturbance from their tinnitus.  Some examples of management include:

  • Avoiding quiet environments by playing classical music or listening to white noise or a fan may keep patients from focusing on the noises in their ears.
  • Wearing hearing aids with a tinnitus management software is very helpful for patients with tinnitus.  Streaming auditory information from apps through Bluetooth technology has been very beneficial in tinnitus management.
  • Stress management is important for patients who suffer from tinnitus.
  • Reducing sodium and caffeine as well as nicotine also helps in tinnitus management

 

How can you find out if you have tinnitus for sure?

By seeing an audiologist at Cornerstone Audiology. A comprehensive hearing health assessment will be performed.  If you do have tinnitus, our team is here to advise, support and help you better manage your condition.