An annoying ringing or buzzing sound in the ear is known as Tinnitus. This can occur without warning and for no particular reason. This irritating problem can be constant, intermittent or pulsating and can be the result of a more serious underlying condition such as an infection. While this is most commonly found to be a chronic disorder, it can be managed with proper treatments and methods.
Tinnitus comes from the Latin word tinnitus which means ringing. It has been a peculiar problem for thousands of years with many varieties of treatments resulting from its existence. This condition can either be unilateral meaning one ear or bilateral meaning both ears.
There are two distinct types of Tinnitus. The first, Subjective Tinnitus refers to a noise only the affected person can hear while Objective Tinnitus can be heard by a professional health care provider. Each type carries its own cause. Objective Tinnitus is generally treatable; however subjective Tinnitus is more difficult as only the person affected can hear it.
Tinnitus is caused by:
Obstruction due to fluid or wax buildup Ear infections Damage to the eardrum or the little bones in the middle ear Aspirin overdose Meniere’s disease Brain tumor Aneurysm Traumatic head injury, such as a severe blow to the head.
A health care professional will acquire your medical history, perform a physical examination as well as enlist the aid of specialized testing such as an audiogram in order to diagnose whether you in fact have Tinnitus and what type.
Other important tests:
Auditory brain stem response (ABR), tests the hearing nerves and brain pathways CT scan MRI scan to rule out a tumor
Tinnitus does not have a specific cure, however it can be managed with the introduction of other noises into your environment. This will allow focusing on another sound other than the ringing in your ears. This condition can be temporary or it can be a lifelong affliction.
If you have a chronic disease such as hypertension, make sure to keep your blood pressure within normal limits. You can reduce your risks of getting tinnitus by avoiding loud noises, keeping blood pressure within normal limits, reducing stress and fatigue, and taking no more than the recommended dosage of medications that can cause tinnitus, such as aspirin.
Another tool you can use is your ability to focus on something else. By transferring your concentration onto something else, the noise will become less. Other noises such as those from a fan or anything that create another sound in the room. This distracting noise is referred to as “white noise” and can be very effective in reducing the annoyance of Tinnitus.
Always consult with a physician if you suspect you may have Tinnitus. Always remember, a little white noise is a healthy way to eradicate the blues of the buzzing ear.