Tinnitus is a condition where a person often hears ‘ringing in the ears’. But he can also hear sounds resembling hissing, clicking, or whistling. The condition can be temporary, or it can graduate to a chronic problem that disrupts daily life. It affects over 30% of the population at some point in their lives. Of those, 13% develop chronic tinnitus. It usually occurs after the age of 50, but children and adolescents can experience it, too. Some of the common causes can be exposure to high levels of noise, head and neck injuries, as well as ear infections. In some cases, tinnitus can be an indicator of a serious underlying medical condition. Hence, it shouldn’t be taken lightly.
Unfortunately, tinnitus has no permanent cure. However, some tinnitus treatments can help manage it. Most people suffering from chronic tinnitus adjust to it over time, but about 1 in 5 will find it very disturbing and hard to live with. It can also cause insomnia, difficulty in concentrating, poor work or school performance, irritability, anxiety, and depression
Treatment of Tinnitus anf its Symptoms
The sounds are phantom noises,i.e., in the absence of any external sounds. Apart from ‘ringing in the ears’, tinnitus can cause:
Most people suffer from subjective tinnitus – a sound with no origin point and which can only be heard by the person. The noises can vary from low pitch to very high pitches, resembling a squeal. The person may hear it in one or both ears. Tinnitus may affect the person throughout the day, or it may come and go.
In comparatively rare cases, the person might hear a rhythmic pulsing or whooshing sound (like a heartbeat). This is known as pulsatile tinnitus, and your doctor might be able to hear the tinnitus once he conducts an examination. It is also called objective tinnitus.
If your tinnitus is caused by an underlying condition, your doctor might be able to reduce your symptoms by treating the underlying cause. The tinnitus treatment will include:
Earwax removal. Removing accumulated earwax can help in considerably decreasing tinnitus symptoms.
Treating a blood vessel condition. If there is an underlying blood vessel condition, it will require medication, surgery or another treatment.
Hearing aids. If your condition is a result of exposure to excessive noise or hearing loss due to age, look for hearing aids in Dubai, as these may help improve your symptoms.
Changing the medication. If some medication you’re taking is adding fuel to the fire, your doctor may advice you to either stop the said medication or switch to a different one.
More often than not, tinnitus can’t be cured. In such scenarios, there are treatments that can make it less noticeable. A hearing aid specialist in Dubai might prescribe an electronic device that helps in the suppression of your symptoms. Devices can be:
White noise machines: White noise machines produce certain sounds such as the sound of falling rain, ocean waves or other soothing sounds and often prove to be effective in dealing with tinnitus symptoms.
Masking devices: These devices produce a continuous, low-level noise that suppresses your tinnitus symptoms. They are worn just like hearing aids.
Counselling helps in dealing with your condition, as you need to accept the fact that the problem isn’t going anywhere. Behavioural treatment options thus aim to help you live with your tinnitus. They help you change the way you think and feel about the symptoms. Options include:
Tinnitus retraining therapy (TRT): An individual-focused treatment program, it is administered by an audiologist or a tinnitus treatment centre. It employs counselling from a trained professional. Here you’ll be wearing a device that helps in masking your tinnitus symptoms while receiving counselling simultaneously. It builds a habit over time to notice the tinnitus less.
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) or other forms of counselling. This employs a mental health professional who’ll teach you coping mechanisms so that the symptoms are less bothersome. This will also help with anxiety and depression.
Although medications can’t cure the condition, in some cases, they may help reduce the severity of symptoms or complications.