Let’s set the scene: you’re in your bed at night trying to relax after a long, stressful day. You feel yourself beginning to drift off to sleep. Then you start to hear it: a buzzing sound inside your ears. You know it’s nothing in your bedroom because the radio, TV, and phone have all been turned off. Unfortunately, this sound is inside your ears and it won’t go away.
If this situation sounds familiar, then chances are that you’re one of the 50 million people who suffer from tinnitus. Buzzing, ringing, and a range of other sounds will be heard in your ears when you have this problem. For the majority of people, tinnitus won’t have a significant impact on their lives beyond being a simple inconvenience. For other people, unfortunately, tinnitus can be unbearable and cause them to lose sleep and have a hard time engaging in work and recreational activities.
What’s The Primary Cause of Tinnitus?
Tinnitus remains somewhat of a mystery, but this condition has been narrowed down to a few causes. It’s most common in individuals who have damaged hearing, and also people who have heart problems. It’s believed that tinnitus happens due to limited blood flow around the ears, which makes the heart pump blood harder in order for it to get where it needs to go. People who have iron-deficiency anemia frequently experience tinnitus symptoms since their blood cells do not carry enough oxygen throughout their body, which, again, works the heart harder to deliver nutrients to the right place, often resulting in tinnitus.
Tinnitus also occurs as a symptom of other conditions, like ear infections, canal blockages, and Meniere’s disease. All of these ailments affect the hearing and result in scenarios where tinnitus becomes more prevalent. Sometimes treatment can be difficult when the cause of tinnitus is not evident, but that doesn’t mean treatment isn’t possible.
How Can Tinnitus be Treated?
There are a few treatments available to help stop the buzzing in your ears, all depending on the underlying cause of your tinnitus. One important thing to note, however, is that there is presently no known cure for tinnitus. In spite of this fact, there’s still a good possibility that your tinnitus will get better or even vanish completely due to these treatments.
Research has shown that hearing aids help cover up tinnitus in people who have hearing loss.
If covering up the noise doesn’t help, cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) has been confirmed to help people live with the buzzing in their ears that doesn’t disappear with other treatments. This type of mental health treatment helps patients turn their negative feelings about tinnitus into more positive, realistic thoughts that will help them function normally on a day to day basis.