What is tinnitus?
Have you noticed that you’re starting to hear hissing, roaring, or ringing sounds after listening to some loud music or hearing some loud noises? That’s probably tinnitus. It’s a common condition commonly known as a constant ringing in your ears that makes it hard to hear actual sounds.
As many as one in seven people will experience tinnitus, or ringing in their ears, at some time of their life, varying from mild to severe. And while only a very small group experience the more severe form of this condition, it can still be bothersome especially when it interferes with your concentration and hearing.
So what causes tinnitus?
There are several health conditions that can result in tinnitus. These include eardrum infections, thyroid problems, reaction to medications, and even excess earwax. When you have tinnitus, you’re basically hearing non-existent sounds — that indicates that something has gone awry along the auditory pathway. Tinnitus can also be a sign of age-related hearing loss.
How to live with it
Before you make any changes in your routine, the first step is to take a hearing test to see whether you in fact have tinnitus. While there’s currently no cure yet for this condition, you can manage it with the help of technology and a few lifestyle changes:
Avoid total silence
Tinnitus is usually more prominent when you’re in complete silence. Keep your ears busy with some white noise or background noise from the TV or radio to help mask the constant ringing.
Use available technology
There are specialised devices that can mask the distracting sounds you hear from tinnitus. Some people also benefit from using a hearing aid or invisible aid as it amplifies outside noises, effectively masking the ringing as well.
Stay free from stress
It’s understandable that tinnitus can stress you out and even cause anxiety. But stress only worsens tinnitus, and for some people, it’s actually the cause of tinnitus! Try to keep yourself calm and relaxed through meditative activities.
Check your medications
Certain antibiotics, antidepressants and arthritis medications can make tinnitus worse. Check the side effects of your medications if you start experiencing hearing difficulty and auditory issues.
Limit caffeine intake
Beverages that are high in caffeine, like coffee, tea and sodas, can temporarily contribute to your loss of ability to naturally hear sounds. Cut back on these products if you’re experiencing such symptoms.
Do you need a hearing aid for tinnitus?
As mentioned, hearing aids can help some individuals who are suffering from tinnitus. Tinnitus is usually accompanied by a degree of hearing loss, which means a hearing aid can address the two-fold need of receiving natural stimulation from environmental sounds and blocking the ringing sounds.
Even when you’re in a quiet room, if you wear a hearing aid you can pick up sounds you wouldn’t otherwise hear without these devices. It allows you to hear what you are supposed to and at the same time helps mask the tinnitus.
Leading experts can help you regain control of your hearing and enjoy your daily activities. Whether you qualify for subsidised devices and free services, we will guide you in navigating the whole process and connect you with leading experts. Register with us today to find out how to get free hearing appointment.