Tinnitus is a common health condition experienced by millions of Americans usually after the age of 50, but this can also affect children and adolescents too. According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine, people who suffer from tinnitus often describe hearing a ringing sensation in their ears. It can sound like a clicking, hissing, roaring or buzzing noise. However, the frequency, intensity, and duration of tinnitus can vary from person to person, and people may suffer from tinnitus symptoms in one or both ears. Many factors contribute to tinnitus but rest assured, you’re far from alone in this condition.


What is tinnitus?

Tinnitus is the thought of noise when no actual external sound is present. The noise perceived may vary. The most common perception is hissing, roaring, ringing, buzzing, cicadas and night sounds. Some people hear a sing sound while others experience multiple sounds. Tinnitus is a sign to you and your doctor that something else is going wrong with your body. It’s a common health concern from inner-ear damage, to earwax, to stress, to blood vessel disorders.


What causes tinnitus?

Tinnitus is not a disorder but is a symptom of some other underlying health condition. Tinnitus could be due to its many causes, which include: conductive (age-related) hearing loss, exposure to loud noises, ear and sinus infections, thyroid problems, heart or blood vessel problems, Meniere’s disease, brain tumors, certain medicines or hormonal changes in women.
Researchers also correlated alcohol drinking, smoking cigarettes, eating high fat and high sugar foods and consuming caffeinated beverages to having tinnitus. Patients experiencing tinnitus should see their hearing health professional or physician for a full examination to diagnose the underlying cause of symptoms.


How is tinnitus treated?

Treating tinnitus or hearing loss is a matter of becoming informed about your specific hearing challenges. Different treatments can be used to ease those suffering from tinnitus and dealing with these issues can significantly improve a person’s quality of life. Tinnitus treatments include professional counseling to help cope with the effects, sound therapy using subtle background noises to reduce the impacts and hearing aids, which in many cases have been able to help provide relief through amplification of other sounds. If you are suffering from a symptom of tinnitus ringing, whizzing, hissing or buzzing in one or both ears, contact your healthcare professional for treatment.


How do hearing aids help with tinnitus?

Hearing aids work to manage Tinnitus with or without hearing loss. Hearing aid amplify sounds and takes pressure off your brain and ears so that you don’t struggle to listen to conversations. It also reduces conditions such as Tinnitus that can distract your hearing. Using hearing aids deliver sound to the ears that are not picking up enough sound on their own. However, getting hearing aids is easy. You can refer you to a local audiology service for a hearing test and the fitting of a hearing aid. If you buy any hearing aid, make sure that insurance covers it for loss or damage.


Elderly man with hearing aid.