What is tinnitus?
Imagine a constant noise in your head. A noise that never lets up. It’s there when you try to sleep and there when you wake up.
From a slight high pitched whine to a locomotive constantly in your head tinnitus is different for everyone.
The biggest consideration is to understand that the noise a person hears is not imagined. It is real and a symptom of a malfunction somewhere in the hearing system.
What causes tinnitus?
There are many causes of tinnitus and sometimes tinnitus is brought on or aggravated not just by one of these causes but many.
Here’s a list of just a few of the known tinnitus causes and aggravators:
• Exposure to loud noise
• Middle ear infections
• Age related hearing loss
• Some prescription drugs
• Compacted ear wax
• Ménière’s disease
• Head injury
How does tinnitus affect people?
The effects of tinnitus vary from person to person and depends on the severity of the. Most people can cope with the slight constant annoying sound, but for others the disease can lead to ongoing problems.
Tinnitus can have psychological consequences for sufferers. They can be concerned the sound will grow and become so annoying they think they will literally go insane. This is an extreme case but the constant noise can deprive sufferers of sleep leading to shortened attention spans, lack of concentration and even depression.
Is there a tinnitus cure?
It would be great if there was a magic bullet for tinnitus, but unfortunately there is no cure. Over time however some treatment and management options have been trialled that have shown effectiveness in some sufferers.
• Hearing aids: If the cause is hearing loss related, solving the hearing loss allows people to hear softer sounds they otherwise might miss. These sounds in turn masks the tinnitus.
• Masking devices: Masking devices create a different sound to mask the perception of the tinnitus. White noise, ocean waves or music are created in the same pitch of the tinnitus to help cancel it out.
• Neuromonics: Neuromonics uses specially formulated music to mask and break the loop with the emotional area of the brain, which reduces the stress associated with tinnitus. Neuromonics also includes some counselling to help the sufferer emotionally deal with the tinnitus.
No matter how bad the tinnitus is, the sooner a treatment and management plan is developed, the better the long-term outcome for the sufferer. If you do suffer from tinnitus, speak to Clarity today to see what steps you can take to lessen the impact of this disease.
Grant is a passionate and tireless advocate for ethical and evidence-based hearing health assessment and treatment. Grant and his wife Sara started Clarity in 2008 in north Queensland and have now grown it to 35 clinics throughout the state. Clarity prides itself on ensuring you get the right, expert diagnosis and the best advice and recommendations to suit your hearing loss, lifestyle and budget.
Clarity Hearing + Balance
Call 1300 CLARITY or
Mackay 4957 2000
Townsville 4779 1566
Clinics also in: Ayr | Bowen | Charters Towers | Collinsville | Hughenden | Ingham | Mt Isa | Proserpine | Richmond | Sarina and more.