Woman grimacing with hand on the left side of her head suffering from tinnitus

Are you going crazy with that tinnitus in your ears? Learn whether your tinnitus is inherited or what the cause might be.

What is tinnitus?

Tinnitus is the name describing a person’s perception of a ringing, droning, or buzzing in the ear with no external stimulus present to explain this experience. The direct translation of the term tinnitus is”ringing like a bell”.”

How will tinnitus impact my day to day living?

Tinnitus can disrupt personal connections in several aggravating ways. It’s normally a sign that you have damaged hearing or some root health condition and not a disease in and of itself. You might hear tinnitus in one ear or both ears and it can hinder your ability to focus.

Regardless of how you’re experiencing tinnitus, it’s always disruptive. Sleep loss, anxiety, and even depression can also be triggered by tinnitus symptoms.

What causes tinnitus?

Tinnitus can be long lasting or it can come and go. Short term types of tinnitus are typically brought on by prolonged exposure to loud noises, like a rock concert. Tinnitus has been known to co-occur with several different medical issues.

Here are several conditions that generally accompany tinnitus:

  • Excessive earwax accumulation
  • Head or neck injuries
  • Exposure to loud noise for sustained periods of time
  • Age-related hearing loss
  • The ear bone has undergone changes
  • Injuries that impact nerves of the ear
  • Acoustic neuroma where a benign tumor forms on the cranial nerve going from the brain to the inner ear
  • Anxiety or depression
  • Inner ear infections
  • Inner ear cell damage and irritation of the sensitive hairs used to conduct sound, causing random transmissions of sound to your brain
  • Meniere’s Disease
  • Different medications
  • Teeth grinding (bruxism) triggered by a TMJ disorder

Could I have inherited this tinnitus from my parents?

Tinnitus isn’t directly inherited. But the symptoms can be affected by your genes. You can, as an example, inherit a tendency for your ear bone to change. These changes are a consequence of irregular bone growth that can be handed down through family lines. Some of the other conditions that can result in ringing in the ear may be inherited from your parents, including:

  • Predisposition to anxiety or depression
  • Certain diseases
  • Being prone to inner ear infections or wax build-up

You can’t directly inherit tinnitus, but there are conditions that become breeding grounds for tinnitus which you may have inherited.

If your family has a history of tinnitus, you should definitely come in for an evaluation.

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The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.
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