You have a buzzing in your ears and it’s not getting any better, if anything it’s getting worse. It started off quietly enough, one of those “is it really there” sort of situations. But after being at the construction site all day (for work), you’ve realized just how loud (and how relentless) that buzzing has become. These noises can take many forms, like ringing, buzzing, or any number of noises. You don’t know if you should come in and see us or how ringing in your ears could even be managed.
The source of your tinnitus symptoms will significantly establish what approach will be most suitable for you. But there are certain common threads that can help you prepare for your own tinnitus treatment.
What kind of tinnitus are you experiencing?
Tinnitus is extremely common. There can be a number of causes for the ringing (or whatever tinnitus noises you’re hearing). So when it comes to treatment, tinnitus is normally split into one of two categories:
- Medical Tinnitus: Inherent medical issues, including ear infections, excessive earwax, a growth, or other medical issues, can be the cause of tinnitus. Medical professionals will usually try to treat the underlying issue as their primary priority.
- Non-Medical Tinnitus: Tinnitus that is triggered by hearing damage or hearing loss is typically known as “non-medical” tinnitus. Severe, constant, and chronic tinnitus can be the outcome of hearing damage related to long term exposure to loud noise (like at your construction site). It’s usually very challenging to treat non-medical tinnitus.
The kind of tinnitus you have, and the root cause of the hearing affliction, will determine the best ways to manage those symptoms.
Treatments for medical tinnitus
If your tinnitus is related to a root medical condition, it’s likely that treating your initial illness or disorder will alleviate the ringing in your ears. Treatments for medical tinnitus may include:
- Antibiotics: Your doctor may prescribe you with antibiotics if your tinnitus is caused by a bacterial ear infection. Your tinnitus symptoms will probably go-away when the infection clears.
- Hydrocortisone: Some types of infections will not react to antibiotics. For instance, antibiotics never work on viral infections. Hydrocortisone may be prescribed in these situations to manage other symptoms.
- Surgery: When your tinnitus is related to a tumor or other growth, doctors could perform surgery to remove the mass that is causing your tinnitus, especially if your symptoms are diminishing your quality of life.
If your tinnitus is related to a medical problem, you’ll want to contact us to get personalized treatment options.
Non-medical tinnitus treatment options
The causes of non-medical tinnitus are often much harder to identify and manage than is typically the case with medical tinnitus. Non-medical tinnitus has no cure particularly if it’s caused by hearing impairment. Instead, treatment to enhance quality of life by relieving symptoms is the normal course of action.
- Medications: There are some experimental medicines available for treating tinnitus. For example, steroids and anti-anxiety medication combinations can sometimes help minimize tinnitus symptoms. But before you make any decisions, you’ll want to talk to us.
- Hearing aids: A hearing aid can help if your tinnitus is getting worse as your hearing worsens. When you are dealing with hearing loss everything externally becomes quieter and that can make your tinnitus noises seem louder. A hearing aid can help mask the sound of your tinnitus by raising the volume of everything else.
- Cognitive-behavioral therapy: You can get training that will help you learn to ignore your tinnitus sounds. This frequently used strategy has helped many people do just that.
- Noise-masking devices: Often called “white noise machines,” these devices are made to provide enough sound to minimize your ability to hear the ringing or buzzing caused by your tinnitus. These devices can be tuned to generate specific sounds created to balance out your tinnitus symptoms.
Find what works
For the majority of us, it won’t be completely clear what’s triggering our tinnitus, so it’s likely you’ll have to attempt several strategies in order to successfully treat your own hearing issues. In most situations, tinnitus can’t be cured. But numerous different treatments are available that could reduce the symptoms. The trick is identifying the one that works for you.