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Tinnitus: Causes and Treatments

Tinnitus: Causes and Treatments

Tinnitus is a term typically used to describe a ringing in the ears, though it can actually refer to any swishing or other type of noise that is constant and appears to occur within the head or ears. Though it is often a health issue affecting the elderly, it can affect people of any age. Understanding the underlying cause of a person’s tinnitus is important for finding the appropriate treatment.

Causes of Tinnitus

One of the most common causes of tinnitus is natural aging. As the body ages, natural trauma, such as loud noises over the years, causes damage to the ear’s structure. This results in tinnitus.

Tinnitus that affects both ears is usually the result of ear trauma. For example, being near the speakers at a concert can result in temporary tinnitus in both ears. However, it can also be caused by other types of trauma, such as trauma due to other noises, trauma to the head or even drugs.

Certain medications can result in tinnitus in one or both ears. For example, overusing aspirin can result in tinnitus. Other medications that can cause tinnitus include aminoglycoside antibiotics, certain cancer medications, diuretics, and chloroquine and quinine, both of which are used to treat malaria.

In some instances, tinnitus can be the result of blood flow near the ears. Pregnant women may be subjected to temporary tinnitus due to increased blood flow or the development of new veins near the ear canal.

Additional Related Article to Read : Acupuncture: Fertility Treatment for Men and Women

Other causes of tinnitus include earwax blockage, changes to the bones in the ear, stress, TMJ disorders (temperomandibular joint), injuries to the neck, Meniere’s disease (an inner ear disorder), high blood pressure, benign tumors (known as acoustic neuromas) as well as cancerous tumors.

Treatments for Tinnitus

The treatment for a case of tinnitus can vary greatly from person to person based on the underlying cause of the condition. This makes it extremely important for the patient to be evaluated by an ear, nose and throat specialist, better known as an otolaryngologist, who can work to determine what the underlying cause is. Once the underlying cause has been identified, it is treated if possible.

It is important to note that in some instances, tinnitus may go away entirely on its own. For example, a pregnant woman suffering from tinnitus due to increased blood flow will typically be relieved of the issue after giving birth and the amount of blood (and blood flow) returns to normal.

There are no medications that can be prescribed to treat tinnitus, which makes this condition extremely frustrating. However, there are some drugs currently in trials that may be available in the future pending results.

Tinnitus is a frustrating and disruptive issue that many people are forced simply to ‘live with’ once diagnosed. Though it can dissipate on its own, many times it is a permanent condition where no treatment is available. However, identifying underlying causes may be the key to finding a treatment for certain cases of tinnitus.

source : Tinnitus

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