Request an ear wax removal appointment today.
If you have just started to notice a ringing, whooshing, clicking or buzzing sound in your ears, you are likely suffering from a tinnitus condition. Although this condition affects around 13% of the UK population, the actual cause is unknown and no permanent cure exists.
So does tinnitus go away, or is it permanent? The answer is not clear cut. Tinnitus can be a temporary reaction to very loud noise and has been associated with stress, but there is no way of knowing how long it will last.
Tinnitus and Chronic Tinnitus
Tinnitus that lasts for three months or longer is chronic tinnitus. Without some form of tinnitus treatment, chronic tinnitus will not improve on its own.
Thirteen Causes of Tinnitus
- Hearing loss — tinnitus resulting from hearing loss is often resolved with a hearing aid.
- Regular exposure to loud noise — this could be at concerts or due to using machinery.
- Stress and anxiety — have been linked to tinnitus and may worsen it.
- Ear infections — symptoms include pain, high temperature, nausea and vomiting and discharge from the ear. Antibiotics are normally prescribed, but tinnitus may not resolve even when the infection has cleared up.
- Ear wax buildup — symptoms include itchiness, a feeling of fullness in the ear, and loss of hearing. But this is easy to resolve with microsuction ear wax removal.
- Meniere’s disease — symptoms include vertigo, nausea and hearing loss. There is no cure, but medication can help to reduce nausea and vertigo.
- Glue ear — usually a temporary condition but may require surgery to fit grommets.
- Otosclerosis — (bone growth in the inner ear). Symptoms include hearing loss and dizziness, which may improve with surgery.
- Perforated eardrum — symptoms include pain, sudden hearing loss, dizziness and liquid leaking from the ear. It will typically heal by itself within three months.
- High blood pressure — symptoms include shortness of breath, fatigue, and headaches. High blood pressure is normally resolved with medication and lifestyle changes.
- Acoustic neuroma (benign tumour inside the ear) — symptoms include gradual hearing loss, typically worse in one ear, balance problems and facial numbness. Surgery to remove the tumour is usually effective and will often improve or resolve the symptoms.
- Thyroid disorders — symptoms include fatigue, weight gain and aching muscles. Medication may resolve the symptoms.
- Diabetes — Symptoms include constant thirst, exhaustion, blurred vision and red, sore gums. Weight loss may resolve type 2 diabetes.
If you have any symptoms of concern, you should speak with your doctor before consulting an audiologist about your tinnitus.
Regain Hearing Tinnitus Treatment
At Regain Hearing, we specialise in personalised tinnitus therapy. Our comprehensive approach begins with an interview which uses the Tinnitus Handicap Inventory (THI), a world-renowned system for grading its severity.
We will then work to develop your unique plan of action, which could include sound cancellation tools and hearing aids and tinnitus apps and sound therapies that can help reduce or even eliminate symptoms. Despite no cure for tinnitus, our exceptional treatments are backed by our ongoing aftercare service, so you know you’re always supported.
Commonly Asked Questions about Tinnitus
1. Does tinnitus cause hearing loss?
Chronic tinnitus may affect your hearing, but it will not lead to hearing loss. However, hearing loss and tinnitus may occur at the same time.
2. How do I know if my tinnitus is permanent?
If your tinnitus is constant and lasts longer than three months, it is unlikely to resolve. However, without treatment, it is likely to be permanent.
3. What causes tinnitus to get louder?
Tinnitus may become louder if you are exposed to loud noise.
4. What is sound therapy?
Sound therapy helps by masking the ringing sound associated with tinnitus, making it less noticeable. You can try using white noise machines in your home. You can also try hearing aids for tinnitus or a portable white noise machine that you use with headphones.
5. What is cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) for tinnitus?
Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) works by teaching new ways of thinking and responding that can help reduce anxiety around tinnitus and provide various techniques like relaxation and imagery modification for managing symptoms. Sessions are typically once a week over two to six months, and studies show that it works well for lessening the distress caused by tinnitus.
6. What is tinnitus retraining therapy (TRT)?
Tinnitus Retraining Therapy (TRT) is an innovative therapy that helps manage tinnitus by retraining the brain to be less aware and bothered by it. It combines sound therapy with counselling to retrain the brain’s response and reduce its perception of tinnitus.
7. Are there any medications for tinnitus?
There are currently no medications specifically for tinnitus, but medications that may help manage symptoms include tricyclic antidepressants, anticonvulsants, and anxiolytics.
If you have any concerns about tinnitus, please contact us to learn more about our tinnitus treatments at Regain Hearing in London, Kent and Essex. Our audiologists can diagnose tinnitus and provide microsuction ear wax removal if required.