10 things you should know about tinnitus

Does it ever sound as though alarm bells are going off in your ears? You could be suffering from tinnitus, the perception of ringing in the ears. (Though, this hearing symptom could also manifest itself with other sounds, like clicking, hissing, roaring, or even musical notes).

Tinnitus is actually a very common hearing problem, affecting about 1 in 5 people, some to a degree that they even seek the help of medical professionals like a physician or audiologist.

Tinnitus isn’t a disease in and of itself.  It’s a symptom that’s caused by some other medical pathology that often should be diagnosed and properly treated.  It’s associated with many forms of hearing problems, including hearing loss, exposure to loud noise, medications, specific disease, tumors, allergies or even head and neck trauma.

The good news? There are treatment options for tinnitus.

Salem Audiology offers a quick test online to help determine whether you are suffering from tinnitus. The questions they pose are: Do you hear a ringing, roaring, clicking or hissing sound in your ears? Do you hear this often or all the time? Does this sound bother you a lot?

If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, we recommend you give them a call, and schedule a visit with an audiologist for a tinnitus evaluation. After some audiometric testing and discussing your personal history, the team will be able to determine the likely causes and best treatment for your tinnitus.

Here are 10 more facts that are helpful to know about tinnitus, which, while common, can still be puzzling because of the myriad of conditions that can cause it.

  • Roughly 200 different health disorders can cause tinnitus as a symptom. That’s according to the American Tinnitus Association (ATA). Some of the causes include: Age-related hearing loss; noise-induced hearing loss; obstruction in the middle ear, like earwax or dirt; head and neck trauma; temperomandibular joint disorder (known as TMJ); nasal congestion from cold or flu; barometric trauma from diving or snorkeling; traumatic brain injury; certain medications and diuretics and medical conditions, including high blood pressure, anemia, stress, anxiety, fibromyalgia and others.

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