One in five people experience the sensation of ringing ears, clinically known as tinnitus. This symptom is associated with many conditions. Tinnitus can be a sign of hearing loss, but often it is not indicative of a serious issue. The main problem is, ringing ears can be annoying!
At Ress Hearing, our audiologist uses the latest diagnostic tools for hearing tests. We can evaluate your hearing, talk with you about your tinnitus, and discuss ways to relieve the ringing. Call our Boca Raton hearing center at 516-353-7377 to schedule an appointment today.
What does tinnitus sound like?
We commonly refer to “ringing ears,” but some people experience more of a buzzing, hissing, clicking, or roaring sound with the condition. Level of the sound varies; you may become irritated with a low, consistent or recurring noise, or you could suffer with a loud, persistent sound. The sensation can be so loud and constant that it interferes with work and other activities.
Who can hear your ringing ears?
You may think that only you can hear the ghost sounds caused by tinnitus. In most cases, that’s true. Subjective tinnitus is only audible to the patient. Though rare, objective tinnitus can be detected by a physician during an examination.
When to Seek Professional Help
Any time a health issue becomes bothersome, stressful, or negatively impacts quality of life, the best course of action is to see a doctor. With tinnitus that develops with or just following an upper respiratory infection, if the ringing does not subside one week after you start feeling better, it’s time to seek professional guidance.
If ringing ears begin abruptly, for no apparent reason, or if you experience dizziness along with tinnitus, see a physician.
Causes of Tinnitus
Age is a major factor in hearing loss, and tinnitus can accompany the condition. People 60 years old or beyond have a 1-in-3 chance of losing their hearing, in the USA.
Loud noises, such as those emitted by firearms, machinery, and even personal music devices with headphones, can contribute to tinnitus and hearing loss. In some cases, a single high-decibel event may cause temporary ringing in the ears. Prolonged exposure, however, can cause permanent tinnitus and/or hearing problems.
A condition known as otosclerosis involves hardening of the bones of the inner ear. One side effect is tinnitus. Otosclerosis is often hereditary, so if your parent or grandparent had the condition, you could develop it, as well.
Earwax is natural and has a purpose, protecting the inner ear from dirt and bacterial growth. When it builds up, however, earwax can become problematic. It can be a factor in hearing loss, irritation of the ear, and ringing ears.
TMJ disorder, or temporomandibular joint disorder, may contribute to tinnitus. Head and neck injuries, skull trauma, and blood vessel/circulatory issues can cause ringing in the ears. Cancerous and non-cancerous tumors in and around the head and neck, Miniere’s disease, and many medications also cause tinnitus.
See an Audiologist for Tinnitus Diagnosis and Treatment
You do not have to endure ringing ears forever. Call Ress Hearing today at 516-353-7377 if you live in or near Boca Raton. Our audiologist will use state-of-the-art technology to find out whether your tinnitus is affecting your hearing, short or long-term. After assessing your condition and discussing symptoms and health history, he will make a clinical diagnosis and offer practical treatment options.