Let’s set the scene: You’re lying in bed attempting to fall asleep after a long exhausting day. Your eyelids are getting heavy and you recognize that sleep is right around the corner. Then you start to hear it: a ringing sound inside your ears. You’re certain it’s nothing in your room because the radio, TV, and phone have all been turned off. Unfortunately, this noise is in your ears and it won’t stop.
If this situation has happened to you, then it’s likely that you’re one of the 50 million people that have tinnitus. Ringing, Buzzing, and a variety of other sounds will be heard inside of your ears when you suffer from this condition. For the majority of people, tinnitus will not have a substantial impact on their lives besides being a simple irritation. For other individuals, unfortunately, tinnitus can be debilitating and cause them to lose sleep and have difficulty doing work and recreational activities.
What Causes Tinnitus?
Tinnitus is still a bit of a mystery, but experts have narrowed down a few triggers for this problem. It shows up commonly in people who have damaged hearing, and also individuals who suffer from heart problems. It’s believed that tinnitus occurs due to reduced blood flow around the ears, which makes the heart pump blood harder in order for it to get where it needs to go. People who have iron-deficiency anemia frequently suffer from tinnitus symptoms since their blood cells do not carry enough oxygen throughout their body, which, again, makes the heart work overtime to get oxygen and other nutrients where they need to go.
Tinnitus also happens as a symptom of other conditions, such as Meniere’s disease, ear infections, and ear canal blockages. All of these ailments impact the hearing and lead to scenarios where tinnitus becomes more prevalent. In other situations, there may not be an easily discernible cause of tinnitus, which can make treatment difficult, but not impossible.
How Can Tinnitus be Managed?
There are a number of treatments out there to help stop the ringing in your ears, all dependent on the underlying cause of your tinnitus. One relevant thing to take note of, however, is that there is presently no known cure for tinnitus. But these treatments will still present a good possibility for your tinnitus to get better or disappear completely.
Studies have revealed that hearing aids help mask tinnitus in people who have hearing loss.
If covering up the noise doesn’t help, cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) has been confirmed to help people deal with the ringing in their ears that doesn’t disappear with other treatments. This kind of mental health treatment helps people change their negative ideas about tinnitus into more positive, practical thoughts that help them function normally on an every day basis.