You have a ringing in your ears and it’s not improving, if anything it’s getting worse. At first, you could hardly hear it. But after being at the construction site all day (for work), you’ve noticed just how noisy (and how relentless) that buzzing has become. These sounds can take many forms, such as ringing, buzzing, or any number of noises. You don’t know if you should contact us or how ringing in your ears could even be addressed.
The source of your tinnitus symptoms will substantially establish what approach will be right for you. But your own tinnitus treatment will share some common threads with others that can help you get ready.
What type of tinnitus are you experiencing?
Tinnitus is not unusual. There can be a number of causes for the ringing (or whatever tinnitus sounds you’re hearing). That’s why tinnitus is usually split into two categories when it comes to treatment:
- Medical Tinnitus: Some tinnitus symptoms are caused by an underlying medical problem, like an ear infection, excessive earwax, or a growth, among other conditions. Medical professionals will typically attempt to treat the underlying problem as their primary priority.
- Non-Medical Tinnitus: Tinnitus that is related to hearing damage or hearing loss is usually known as “non-medical” tinnitus. Significant, constant, and chronic tinnitus can be the outcome of hearing damage caused by long term exposure to loud noise (like at your construction site). Non-medical tinnitus is often more difficult to treat.
The best way to manage your symptoms will be determined by the underlying cause of your hearing problem and the kind of tinnitus you’re experiencing.
Treating medical tinnitus
If your tinnitus is related to a root medical ailment, it’s likely that managing your original illness or ailment will alleviate the ringing in your ears. Here are a few treatments for medical tinnitus:
- Surgery: When your tinnitus is caused by a tumor or other growth, doctors may perform surgery to remove the mass that’s causing your tinnitus, particularly if your symptoms are decreasing your quality of life.
- Antibiotics: Your doctor may prescribe you with antibiotics if your tinnitus is related to a bacterial ear infection. Once the infection clears up, it’s likely that your hearing will return to normal.
- Hydrocortisone: Some types of infections will not respond to antibiotics. Viral infections, for example, never respond to antibiotic solutions. In these cases, your doctor might prescribe hydrocortisone to help you control other symptoms.
If your tinnitus is caused by a medical problem, you’ll want to see us to receive individualized treatment options.
Managing non-medical tinnitus
The causes of non-medical tinnitus are often much more difficult to diagnose and manage than is typically the case with medical tinnitus. Non-medical tinnitus has no cure particularly if it’s caused by hearing impairment. Treatments, instead highlight treating symptoms and improving the quality of life.
- Cognitive-behavioral therapy: You can get training that will help you learn to disregard your tinnitus sounds. Cognitive-behavioral therapy is a widely utilized method created to help you reach just that.
- Noise-masking devices: These devices mask your tinnitus sounds by generating enough white noise to allow the buzzing or ringing to fade into the background. Certain sounds can be tuned into these devices depending on what sounds your tinnitus is creating.
- Medications: Tinnitus is sometimes managed with experimental medication. For example, steroids and anti-anxiety medication combinations can sometimes help minimize tinnitus symptoms. But before you make any decisions, you’ll want to speak with us.
- Hearing aids: A hearing aid can help if your tinnitus is getting worse as your hearing gets worse. When you are dealing with hearing loss everything outside becomes quieter and that can make your tinnitus noises seem louder. When you use a hearing aid it raises the volume of the outside world making your tinnitus sounds seem quieter.
Find what works
In order to successfully treat your hearing issues you will probably need to try out several approaches as the exact cause of your tinnitus most likely won’t be obvious. Depending on the source of your ringing or buzzing, there may not be a cure for your tinnitus. But there are various treatments available. Finding the best one for you is the trick.