What is Tinnitus?
Noises perceived to be originating in the ears or head are called “tinnitus.” Tinnitus may sound like:
Causes of Tinnitus
- Hearing Loss
- High Blood Pressure, Heart Disease or other Circulatory problems
- Central Nervous System problems, including:
- Stroke / Cerebrovascular Accident
- Head Trauma
- Seizure Disorders
- Neurological Diseases
- Temporomandibular Joint (TMJ) problems
- Exposure to Loud Noise
- Ototoxic reactions or side effects from medication, drugs or other chemicals
- Kidney Disease
- Metabolic Diseases, such as Diabetes
- Meniere’s Disease
- Ear Infection
- Acoustic Neuroma - Tumors affecting the hearing or balance nerves
- Cochlear Fistula - A hole or weak spot in the inner ear
What can I do about my tinnitus?
- Avoiding overly quiet places will help make your tinnitus less noticeable.
Use amplification if a hearing loss is present.
Play music or other pleasant sounds, or leave a TV playing softly in the background.
Listen to a radio tuned to no station, so you can hear soft static noise.
Leave a fan running in the background.
Use a Tinnitus Masker instrument.
- Consult your otolaryngologist to find out if there is a medical treatment for whatever is causing your tinnitus.
- Use hearing protection and avoid loud noises, such as power tools, machinery and noisy appliances, loud motors, or gunfire. Also avoid loud music.
- Avoid cholesterol, salt, caffeine, alcohol and other unhealthy foods and beverages.
- Keep your blood pressure under control.
- Avoid ototoxins, such a chemicals or medications that might be harmful to your hearing.
- Consult your dentist if you have a clicking or popping noise or pain when you open and close your mouth. This could be a sign of a temporomandibular joint (TMJ) problem.