Tinnitus Assessment and Treatment
You're not alone
Tinnitus is the perception of noise in the ears or head that no one else can hear. It's a condition that affects more than 45 million Americans, making it one of the most common health conditions in our country.
Commonly referred to as "ringing in the ears", it can be experienced as many different sounds - hissing, buzzing, humming, beeping, dripping, thumping, roaring, or even as music.
For some, tinnitus is nothing more than a mild nuisance in quiet settings or when fatigued or stressed. For others, tinnitus is always present and can be quite debilitating. The good news is that, while it may be annoying, tinnitus rarely indicates a more serious health issue. To be on the safe side however, we highly recommend a comprehensive, diagnostic audiological evaluation to help rule out underlying medical conditions, such as an acoustic neuroma (very rare)), hearing loss, or Meniere's Disease.
Hearing loss and tinnitus often go hand-in-hand, but people with normal hearing can experience it as well. In addition to hearing loss, tinnitus is also associated with:
- Hazardous and prolonged noise exposure
- Acoustic trauma, such as shooting a firearm with no hearing protection
- Certain medications, including certain chemotherapy drugs, antibiotics, and antidepressants
- Ear wax build up
- Ear and sinus infections
- Inner ear diseases, such as Meniere’s Disease
- TMJ disorder
- Head or neck trauma
- Heart or blood vessel issues
- Anxiety, stress, or depression
We're here to help
Research has yet to discover a cure for tinnitus, however contrary to what you may have been told or read, there are many well-established treatment options available for those suffering from tinnitus.
- Counseling and education to better understand tinnitus, ways it can be exacerbated, and techniques for relaxation or to make tinnitus less bothersome.
- Evaluation of overall wellness, including diet, physical activity, stress reduction, biofeedback or hypnotherapy.
- For those with treatable hearing loss, hearing aids assist in treating tinnitus by providing better access to all the sounds in their environment. Over time this auditory stimulation helps train the brain to focus less on the tinnitus.
- Sound Therapy programs, including masking, distraction, habituation, and neuromodulation
- Modification of lifestyle choices including reducing alcohol intake and smoking have also been found to be helpful for tinnitus sufferers.
- Collaboration with a psychologist or counselor who specialize in tinnitus can be helpful for those who require additional support in modifying their reactions to tinnitus.
- Treatment for TMJ, head and neck injuries
As you can see, treatment options vary greatly and it’s important to understand that tinnitus treatment is not a “one size fits all” approach. As part of our Integrative Tinnitus Program Mountain Audiology will work closely with your physician, dentist, and other specialists, including practicians of more integrative or Eastern medicine, to help you find the peace and quiet you've been searching for.
If you’re experiencing tinnitus, schedule and appointment with the Audiologists at Mountain Audiology to learn more about how we can help provide relief to that ringing, buzzing and hissing sound you are experiencing.
For more information, visit the American Tinnitus Association website.