Let’s set the scene: You’re lying in bed trying to sleep after a long exhausting day. You feel yourself starting to drift off to sleep. Then you start to hear it: a buzzing sound in your ears. You’re certain it’s nothing in your room because the radio, TV, and phone are all off. No, this noise is coming from inside your ears and you’re not sure how to make it stop.
If this scenario sounds familiar, then it’s likely 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. The majority of people who have tinnitus consider it a mere annoyance; they notice it now and again but it doesn’t really affect their daily lives. For other individuals, however, tinnitus can be unbearable and cause them to lose sleep and have difficulty engaging in work and recreational activities.
What Causes Tinnitus?
Tinnitus remains somewhat of a mystery, but this problem has been narrowed down to a handful of causes. It shows up mostly in people who have damaged hearing, and also people who have heart problems. Restricted blood flow around the ears is commonly believed to be the underlying cause of tinnitus. This causes the heart to have to work harder to pump blood to where it’s needed. People who have iron-deficiency anemia frequently suffer from tinnitus symptoms because their blood cells do not carry enough oxygen throughout their body, which, once again, makes the heart work overtime to get oxygen and other nutrients where they need to go.
Tinnitus also occurs as a result of other conditions, like Meniere’s disease, ear infections, and ear canal blockages. All of these conditions impact the hearing and lead to situations where tinnitus becomes more prevalent. In some cases treatment can be difficult when the cause of tinnitus is not evident, but that doesn’t mean treatment is impossible.
Is There Any Cure For Tinnitus?
Depending on the underlying cause of your tinnitus, there might be a number of possible treatment options. One relevant thing to note, however, is that there is currently no known cure for tinnitus. Despite this fact, there’s still an excellent chance that your tinnitus will get better or even vanish altogether due to these treatments.
Research has shown that hearing aids help mask tinnitus in individuals who have hearing loss.
If covering up the noise isn’t helpful, cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) has been shown to help people deal with the buzzing in their ears that does not fade away with other treatments. This mental health type of treatment can help individuals who are afflicted by tinnitus to function more normally on an everyday basis by helping them transform their negative thinking into a more positive mindset.