If you have started to notice a ringing sensation in your ears, you may feel as though there’s nothing you can do about it. Luckily, that’s not the case! Most times, ringing in the ears is caused by tinnitus which is a symptom that affects about 15% to 20% of the population and is especially common in older adults. With so many people affected by tinnitus, there are various ways you can help reduce the ringing sensation.
To help you better understand what tinnitus is and why the ringing occurs in your ears, El Dorado Hearing is here to walk you through everything you need to know — including ways you can prevent tinnitus symptoms from occurring.
What is Tinnitus?
Tinnitus isn’t a condition itself but is a symptom of an underlying condition often related to hearing loss or an ear injury. It presents itself as a ringing in the ear, often as a way for the ear to fill the void of sound when hearing loss is present. While some cases of tinnitus are hereditary, many instances of it occur due to environmental factors and health conditions.
Individuals are likely to experience tinnitus due to:
- Loud noises – Have you ever left a concert or sporting event and noticed that your hearing felt worse than normal? You may have even experienced a temporary ringing sensation in your ears. Exposure to loud noises can cause temporary tinnitus, and if this exposure happens regularly, you are more likely to experience permanent damage to your hearing.
- Age – The older you get, the more likely you will experience some form of hearing loss. When your ears struggle to pick up sounds, they will often replace that sound with a ringing noise to fill the space.
- Earwax – When was the last time you had your earwax professionally cleaned? If you produce a lot of earwax and don’t clean your ears, your ear canal can become blocked with earwax. As a result, your eardrum can become irritated and cause you to experience ringing in the ears.
- Ear bone changes – It’s not common knowledge, but the bones in your ear can change and stiffen over time. This hereditary condition is known as otosclerosis, which can directly impact your hearing, resulting in tinnitus.
These are only a few of the reasons why you may be experiencing a ringing sensation in your ear. Next, El Dorado Hearing will walk you through what can be done to reduce the ringing in your ears.
How to treat ringing in the ears
Depending on the severity of the tinnitus, there are a few different treatment methods that your audiologist may recommend following your tinnitus evaluation.
A few of the best methods for treating ringing in the ears include:
- Hearing Aids – Because tinnitus is often a result of the lack of sound within the ear, one of the most effective ways for treating the ringing is to resolve the individual’s hearing loss with hearing aids. By correcting the hearing loss, the individual is less likely to experience a ringing sensation in their ears.
- Tinnitus Retraining Therapy (TRT) – Another option for tinnitus treatment is a combination of sound therapy in conjunction with counseling. This method helps the individual master control over their response to tinnitus.
- Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) – Because tinnitus can make it difficult for an individual to focus and interact with other individuals, it often leaves them in a negative mindset. MBSR helps train the individual’s mindfulness to begin to embrace and control the ringing in their ears.
More often than not, hearing aids are an effective treatment option for tinnitus. While they won’t cure the patient of the symptom completely, hearing aids help them manage the symptoms and help mitigate the ringing while the hearing aids are in use.
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.
Our doctors of audiology specialize in evaluating, diagnosing, and treating tinnitus with great success. Contact us to schedule an appointment.