There’s nothing more frustrating than hearing a constant whistling sound in your ears while trying to enjoy an evening out on the town or a relaxing night at home. Apart from giving you a headache, the whistling noise can make it increasingly difficult to hear or focus on conversations going on around you.
To help overcome this nuisance, the team at El Dorado Hearing has put together a quick guide detailing the causes of ear whistling and why it may be happening to you. Follow along to pinpoint the reason and resolve it quickly and effectively.
What causes your ears to whistle
There are two reasons you may be experiencing whistling in your ears: tinnitus or hearing aids.
Tinnitus is caused by hearing loss and results in the individual hearing a constant ringing in their ears. The ringing noises are more noticeable in environments with low background sounds and can make it difficult to concentrate on conversations. While ringing is most common with tinnitus, the individual may hear a buzzing, whistling, or another similar sound.
For individuals experiencing hearing loss, an audiologist may recommend utilizing hearing aids to help amplify conversations and sounds around them. Although the goal of hearing aids is to help individuals hear more clearly, problems with their hearing aids can result in a consistent whistling sound that is audible to the individual and those around them.
What to do when tinnitus causes the whistling
Tinnitus typically occurs because of environmental factors or health conditions, including exposure to loud noises, natural hearing loss through aging, and having excessive earwax. When the damage is permanently done to the individual’s inner ear, they’re likely to experience the whistling sensation without intervention.
In most cases, an audiologist will recommend that the patient try hearing aids. Individuals tend to experience tinnitus due to the lack of noise in the ear, resulting in a ringing to fill the silence.
To combat this issue, hearing aids are recommended to fix the tinnitus because they reintroduce sound back into the ears when in use. Although hearing aids don’t correct tinnitus, they can make the whistling noise much less apparent while the hearing aids are in use.
What to do when your hearing aids are whistling
While hearing aids are a way to treat tinnitus in patients, they can also be the source of the whistling noise. Here are a few reasons why your hearing aids may be whistling and what to do about it:
Your hearing aids aren’t properly fitted
The most common reason for a whistling noise while wearing hearing aids is that the hearing devices aren’t properly fitted to your ear. If the positioning is off, you may experience the sound escaping from the earmold and reverberating against the hearing aid’s microphone.
This leakage of sound can result in whistling. To check if this is the reason you’re hearing a whistling noise while wearing your hearing aids, schedule an appointment with your audiologist, who can adjust your hearing aids or replace any necessary parts to allow for a proper fit.
You have too much earwax
If there is an excessive amount of earwax in your ear, you’re more likely to experience feedback while wearing hearing aids. This occurs due to the amplified sound being blocked by the earwax and having nowhere to go — causing it to circle back out and go into the device’s microphone.
Have your earwax professionally cleaned to see if this resolves your problem.
Something is covering the hearing aid’s microphone
Your hearing aid cannot do its job if something is covering the microphone and preventing it from picking up and amplifying sounds. When this microphone is blocked, you may experience whistling. Determine if something is blocking the microphone, and if so, remove it so you can reduce the chances of your hearing aids whistling.
El Dorado Hearing is here to help
Take the first step to relief by scheduling a tinnitus evaluation with one of our skilled audiologists at El Dorado Hearing. If you or a family member is struggling with tinnitus, we can help you find a solution involving hearing aids to treat your hearing loss.
Or, if you think your problem is a result of your hearing aids, we can help with that as well. Our doctors of audiology specialize in evaluating, diagnosing, and treating tinnitus with great success and providing unparalleled hearing aid services.
Contact us to schedule an appointment.