What is tinnitus?
Tinnitus is the medical term for the sensation of hearing sounds in your ears or head when no external sound is present. People who suffer from tinnitus typically describe the sound as “ringing in ears,” though others describe it as hissing, buzzing, pulsing, roaring and even chirping.
According to the American Tinnitus Association (ATA), 50 million Americans experience tinnitus (nearly one in six of us). For some, tinnitus is mild and an intermittent annoyance. For others, it’s severe and can have a profound effect on their quality of life. But for everyone, finding tinnitus relief is a high priority.
What causes tinnitus?
Scientists and health experts don’t know the exact physical cause of tinnitus, but several sources are known to trigger or make it worse, including:
- Loud noises and hearing loss – Exposure to loud noises can destroy the non-regenerative cilia (tiny hairs) in the cochlea, causing permanent tinnitus and/or hearing loss.
- Aging – As you age, those same cilia gradually deteriorate, which can lead to tinnitus and/or hearing loss.
- Ototoxic medications – Some prescription medications such as antibiotics, anti-inflammatories, and antidepressants are harmful to the inner ear as well as the nerve fibers connecting the cochlea to the brain.
- Hearing conditions – Conditions such as otosclerosis and Ménière’s disease are known to cause tinnitus.
- Health conditions – Tinnitus can also be a symptom of health conditions like cardiovascular disease, hypertension, stress, and head injuries.
Gladys’ tinnitus treatment experience
Is there a cure for tinnitus?
Currently there is no known cure for tinnitus. There are, however, many tinnitus treatment strategies designed to help sufferers find relief.
One of the most effective forms of treatment, according to the American Tinnitus Association, is sound therapy, which uses sound to make tinnitus less noticeable and take the person’s mind off it. Amplification from hearing aids is one component of sound therapy that has been shown to provide relief. Going a step further, Starkey Hearing Technologies has integrated their patent-pending Multiflex Tinnitus Technology into all their latest hearing aids.
Hearing aids with Multiflex Tinnitus Technology built-in can simultaneously provide customized amplification to treat hearing loss (if needed) while also delivering a unique sound stimulus designed to counterbalance the precise tinnitus sounds the individual hears. This amazing technology tackles the personal nature of tinnitus head-on and delivers the one this every tinnitus sufferer wants – all-day relief.