The ringing or buzzing sound inside one or both the ears is called Tinnitus. It may be continuous or may come and go. Those who suffer from tinnitus experience a wide range of noises inside their ears. Tinnitus is of two types, objective tinnitus and subjective tinnitus. In objective tinnitus, apart from the patient himself, people around him can also hear the buzzing sound inside his ears. But in case of subjective tinnitus only the patient himself can hear the buzzing sound inside his ears. Subjective tinnitus is more common than objective tinnitus. Severe cases of tinnitus can be extremely disturbing, the patient may not be able to sleep or concentrate.
Buzzing,hissing,and ringing sound inside the earThe most common symptoms of tinnitus are buzzing, hissing, and ringing sound inside the ear. Sometimes these sounds may go along with the patient's heartbeat. If the tinnitus patient is also suffering from Meniere disease then the sound in the ear may be accompanied by dizziness and hearing loss.
Damage to hearing nerve
The inner ear has the hearing nerve; any damage to its microscopic endings can cause tinnitus. This is the most common cause of tinnitus. However the hearing nerve is also affected due to aging. Frequent exposure to loud noise also affects the hearing nerve. Therefore those who are always exposed to loud noise can get tinnitus. Any of the four sections of the ear can have tinnitus. Any foreign particle or wax in the external ear can cause tinnitus. Subjective tinnitus may be caused due to some wax in the ear canal.
Objective tinnitus may be caused due to some circulatory problem or some tumor in blood vessel. It may also be caused due to structural defects in the inner ear. Tinnitus may be a symptom of otosclerosis. Conditions like allergy, high or low blood pressure, diabetes, neck injury, head injury may cause tinnitus. Medicines like sedatives, antidepressants, aspirin and so on can also cause tinnitus.
Treatment for Tinnitus
There is no specific or universal treatment for tinnitus, treatment shall be different for different cases of tinnitus. If tinnitus is due to loud noise then wearing a mask could help. Sometimes tinnitus may be a symptom of some other medical problem; in such case the underlying condition must be treated first. Reducing your stress level will also decrease tinnitus, therefore breathe deeply. Put 20 to 40 mg of extract of the Maidenhair tree or Ginkgo biloba into your ears for four to six weeks. This will dilate blood vessels and increase blood flow to the ears.
Avoid saturated fats,sugar,salt
Tinnitus patients must avoid foods like saturated fats, dairy products, sugar, salt, processed foods and so on because all these food items tend to aggravate the condition. Avoid coffee, tea, sweet foods, and refined alcohol because all these result in low blood sugar which can lead to tinnitus. Include lots of fresh and raw fruits and vegetables in your diet. Eat a protein rich diet. Tinnitus patient's diet must include vitamin A, vitamin B, vitamin E, zinc and choline.
Keep blood pressure under control
Avoid alcohol and smoking. Exercise daily to improve your blood circulation. Check and keep you blood pressure under control.
Tinnitus is not a disease, and it doesn't cause hearing disorders. It's any kind of swishing, hissing, whirring, ringing, whistling, buzzing or chirping that goes on inside your head.
The causes? Tinnitus can be a sign of hearing loss, or it can result from head injuries, ear infections or diseases that range from the common cold to diabetes. People who work with noisy equipment, such as power tools, can also get it. Or tinnitus may be initiated by a single loud noise, such as a gunshot or an explosion.
Sometimes tinnitus is only temporary. If you have a ringing in your ears for only a few days (perhaps after listening to loud music), take it as a warning sign. Tone down your listening habits or tinnitus may become permanent.
Even when tinnitus moves in to stay, there are still things you can do about it. The first move is a medical checkup. After that, here are some ways to make it easier to live with.
Tone down sound around you. "Never expose your ears to loud sounds, because they simply make tinnitus worse," says Jack Vernon, Ph.D., professor of otolaryngology at Oregon Health Sciences University and director of the Oregon Hearing Research Center, both in Portland. "If you have to raise your voice to be heard, then the sound around you is too loud. That includes vacuum cleaners, dishwashers, lawn mowers and so forth."
So wear earplugs whenever noise abounds. Pharmacies carry foam, rubber and moldable wax plugs as well as headphones you wear like earmuffs.
Try a little night static. Some people don't notice their tinnitus in the daytime, but as soon as the lights go out, they're up to their inner ears in bells and buzzers. "For those folks, I recommend detuning an FM radio to static between stations," says Dr. Vernon. If you keep the radio near the bed just loud enough to be audible, the static near your head will mask the sounds in your head and let you fall asleep. Other sounds that might be the key to dreamland: a fan running all night or a bit of soft music.
Play that shower! In the "mask that sound" department: "Some people can't hear their tinnitus when they take showers," says Dr. Vernon. Of course, you can't stay in the shower all day, but you can carry shower sounds around with you. Dr. Vernon suggests making a long-playing tape of a running shower. When the tinnitus gets bad, listen to the tape through headphones, he recommends. (The idea is to find a band of tones that includes your tinnitus tone but is more acceptable to listen to.)
Breathe deeply to dismiss distress. "Reducing stress often reduces tinnitus," says Robert E. Brummett, Ph.D., a pharmacologist at the Oregon Hearing Research Center. Deep, slow breathing is one safe way to ease tension any time you feel it creeping up on you, according to Dr. Vernon. But he cautions that this may not be enough. See a counselor if you're having difficulty dealing with stress in your life and your tinnitus is becoming worse because of it.
Skip the smokes and drinks. "Restrict the nicotine, alcohol, tonic water and caffeine you consume," Dr. Brummett suggests. If you find that it helps to cut out one or all of these, consider a permanent vacation from the noise provoker.
Don't take aspirin. People with tinnitus who take aspirin daily (for arthritis, for example) should try a different anti-inflammatory drug if possible, suggests Dr. Brummett. Aspirin can cause or worsen tinnitus. Some of the other anti-inflammatory drugs can also cause or worsen tinnitus, but not in everyone. By working with your doctor, you can try some of the alternative drugs until you find one that you can tolerate.
Give yourself a dose of distraction. "Getting distracted from tinnitus surely will help," says Dr. Vernon. "Focus on some outside things: Help other people. Join some volunteer groups. Don't retire!" he suggests. "People with tinnitus need to enrich rather than restrict their lives."
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This information is solely for informational purposes. IT IS NOT INTENDED TO PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE and should not be treated as a substitute for the medical advice of your own doctor.