You have a buzzing in your ears and it’s not improving, if anything it’s getting worse. It began quietly enough, one of those “is it really there” sort of things. But you’ve observed how loud and persistent the tinnitus noises have become after a full day on the job at a construction site. These noises can take many forms, like ringing, buzzing, or any number of noises. You’re considering coming in to see us, but you’re not sure: how is buzzing in the ears addressed?
The origin of your tinnitus symptoms will substantially establish what approach will be most appropriate for you. But your own tinnitus therapy will share some common threads with others that can help you get prepared.
There are a couple of different types of tinnitus
Tinnitus is not unusual. The ringing or buzzing (or any number of sounds) in your ear can be caused by a number of underlying problems. So when it comes to treatment, tinnitus is often divided into one of two categories:
- Medical Tinnitus: Some tinnitus symptoms are caused by an inherent medical issue, such as an ear infection, excessive earwax, or a growth, among other conditions. Managing the root medical problem will normally be the priority of your medical professional.
- Non-Medical Tinnitus: “Non-medical” nomenclature is generally reserved for tinnitus caused by damaged hearing or hearing impairment. As time passes, exposure to damaging noise (like the noise at your construction site) can cause constant, severe, and chronic tinnitus. Non-medical tinnitus is often more challenging to manage.
The type of tinnitus you have, and the root cause of the hearing condition, will determine the best ways to manage those symptoms.
Treatments for medical tinnitus
If your tinnitus is a result of a root medical condition, it’s likely that managing your initial illness or ailment will alleviate the ringing in your ears. Here are a few treatments for medical tinnitus:
- 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 decreasing your quality of life.
- Hydrocortisone: Certain types of infections will not respond to antibiotics. For instance, antibiotics never work on viral infections. In these cases, your doctor might prescribe hydrocortisone to help you manage other symptoms.
- Antibiotics: If your tinnitus is related to an ear infection (that is, a bacterial ear infection), your doctor may prescribe antibiotics. Once the infection goes away, it’s likely that your hearing will go back to normal.
If your tinnitus is a result of a medical issue, you’ll want to contact us to get personalized treatment options.
Non-medical tinnitus treatments
The causes of non-medical tinnitus are often a lot more difficult to detect and manage than is typically the case with medical tinnitus. There is usually no cure for non-medical tinnitus (especially in cases where the tinnitus is a result of hearing damage). Instead, treatment to enhance quality of life by relieving symptoms is the normal course of action.
- Hearing aids: A hearing aid can help if your tinnitus is becoming worse as your hearing worsens. When you are dealing with hearing loss everything externally gets 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 disregard your tinnitus sounds. Cognitive-behavioral therapy is a widely utilized strategy created to help you achieve just that.
- Medications: There are some experimental medicines available for treating tinnitus. For instance, steroids and anti-anxiety medication mixtures can sometimes help minimize tinnitus symptoms. But before you make any decisions, you’ll want to talk to us.
- Noise-masking devices: These devices hide your tinnitus noises by producing enough white noise to allow the buzzing or ringing to fade into the background. These devices can be tuned to produce specific sounds designed to offset your tinnitus symptoms.
Find what works
For the majority of us, it won’t be immediately clear what’s causing our tinnitus, so it’s likely you’ll need to try multiple strategies in order to effectively treat your own hearing issues. In most cases, tinnitus can’t be cured. But there are many treatments available. The trick is finding the one that works for you.