The buzzing in your ear keeps getting worse. At first, you could barely hear it. But after spending all day at the construction site (for work), you’ve noticed just how loud (and how persistent) that buzzing has become. These sounds can take many forms, such as ringing, buzzing, or any number of sounds. You don’t know if you should contact us or how ringing in your ears could even be managed.
The origin of your tinnitus symptoms will significantly establish what approach will be most suitable for you. But your own tinnitus treatment will share some common threads with others that can help you get prepared.
What type of tinnitus are you experiencing?
Tinnitus is incredibly common. The ringing or buzzing (or any number of noises) in your ear can be caused by various underlying problems. So in terms of treatment, tinnitus is normally divided into one of two categories:
- Medical Tinnitus: Some tinnitus symptoms are caused by an inherent medical issue, like an ear infection, excessive earwax, or a growth, among other ailments. Medical professionals will typically attempt to treat the root problem as their main priority.
- Non-Medical Tinnitus: “Non-medical” nomenclature is usually reserved for tinnitus caused by damaged hearing or hearing loss. As time passes, exposure to harmful noise (such as the noise at your construction site) can cause persistent, significant, and chronic tinnitus. Non-medical tinnitus is often more difficult to treat.
The type of tinnitus you have, and the root cause of the hearing affliction, will determine the best ways to manage those symptoms.
Treatments for medical tinnitus
Your medical tinnitus symptoms will normally clear up when the root medical problem is treated. Here are some treatments for medical tinnitus:
- Hydrocortisone: Certain types of infections will not respond to antibiotics. For example, antibiotics never work on viral infections. Hydrocortisone might be prescribed in these situations to treat other symptoms.
- Surgery: Doctors might decide to perform surgery to get rid of any tumor or growth that could be causing your tinnitus symptoms.
- Antibiotics: If your tinnitus is a result of an ear infection (that is, a bacterial ear infection), your doctor might prescribe antibiotics. Once the infection clears up, it’s likely that your hearing will go back to normal.
You’ll want to make an appointment to get a consultation so we customize a tinnitus treatment plan, particularly if you’re coping with medical tinnitus.
Non-medical tinnitus treatments
The causes of non-medical tinnitus are often a lot harder to identify and treat than is typically the case with medical tinnitus. There is usually no cure for non-medical tinnitus (particularly in cases where the tinnitus is caused by hearing damage). Instead, treatment to improve quality of life by alleviating symptoms is the normal course of action.
- Cognitive-behavioral therapy: In some situations, you can be trained to ignore the sounds of your tinnitus. Cognitive-behavioral therapy is a commonly utilized strategy created to help you reach just that.
- Medications: There are some experimental medicines available for treating tinnitus. As an example, tinnitus symptoms can sometimes be reduced by combinations of anti-anxiety medication and steroids. But before you make any decisions, you’ll want to talk to us.
- Noise-masking devices: These devices hide your tinnitus sounds by creating enough white noise to allow the buzzing or ringing to fade into the background. Specific sounds can be programmed into these devices depending on what noises your tinnitus is producing.
- Hearing aids: If your tinnitus becomes more prominent as your hearing wanes, a hearing aid may help you manage the symptoms of both ailments. The tinnitus symptoms will likely seem louder because everything else becomes quieter (because of hearing loss). A hearing aid can help mask the sound of your tinnitus by raising the volume of everything else.
Find what works
In order to effectively treat your hearing problems you will probably need to explore several approaches as the exact cause of your tinnitus probably won’t be obvious. In most situations, tinnitus can’t be cured. But many different treatments are available that could lessen the symptoms. The trick is finding the one that works for you.