Let’s set the stage: you’re in your bed at night attempting to relax after a long, tiring day. You feel yourself beginning to drift off to sleep. Then you start to hear it: a buzzing sound inside your ears. You know it’s nothing in your bedroom because the radio, TV, and phone have all been turned off. No, this noise is coming from within your ears and you don’t know how to make it stop.
If this situation sounds familiar, then it’s likely that you’re one of the 50 million people who suffer from tinnitus. Buzzing, ringing, and a range of other noises will be heard inside of your ears when you have this condition. For the majority of people, tinnitus will not have a substantial impact on their lives besides being a simple inconvenience. For others, however, tinnitus can be unbearable and cause them to lose sleep and have difficulty performing work and social activities.
What’s The Underlying Cause of Tinnitus?
Tinnitus remains somewhat of a mystery, but experts have focused in on a few triggers for this condition. It’s most common in people who have damaged hearing, as well as individuals who have heart conditions. Restricted blood flow around the ears is commonly believed to be the underlying cause of tinnitus. This causes the heart to have to work harder to pump blood to where it’s needed. People who have iron-deficiency anemia often suffer from tinnitus symptoms since their blood cells do not carry enough oxygen throughout their body, which, once again, makes the heart work overtime to get oxygen and other nutrients where they need to go.
Tinnitus also happens as a result of other conditions, like Meniere’s disease, ear infections, and ear canal blockages. Scenarios where tinnitus becomes more pronounced occur with all of these condition because they all impact the hearing. In some cases treatment can be challenging when the cause of tinnitus is not evident, but that doesn’t mean treatment is impossible.
How Can Tinnitus be Managed?
There are a few treatments out there to help stop the buzzing in your ears, all depending on the underlying cause of your tinnitus. One significant thing to note, however, is that there is presently no known cure for tinnitus. In spite of this fact, there’s still an excellent possibility that your tinnitus will improve or even vanish completely due to these treatments.
Research has revealed that hearing aids help mask tinnitus in people who have hearing loss.
If masking the noise doesn’t help, cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) has been proven to help people deal with the buzzing in their ears that doesn’t fade away with other treatments. This mental health type of treatment can help people who have tinnitus to function more normally on a day to day basis by helping them change their negative thoughts into a more positive outlook.