Worried man listening to a ringing in his ear. Tinnitus concept

Tinnitus is an extremely common condition of the ear. It’s one of the most prevalent health conditions in the world with some estimates indicating that up to 10 percent of the population experiences it at one time or another. The condition manifests as a sound in the ear that isn’t actually there, normally, it’s a buzzing or ringing, but tinnitus can take the form of other sounds as well.

While the prevalence of tinnitus might be evident, the causes are frequently more cloudy. Some of the wide array of tinnitus causes are temporary, while others can be more long term.

That’s why your environment can be very important. After all, every environment has a soundscape, and when that soundscape is loud, you could be causing damage to your ears. This environmental tinnitus may sometimes be long lasting or it may sometimes respond to changes to make your environment quieter.

Why do so many individuals experience tinnitus?

Tinnitus is a condition in which you hear a noise that isn’t really there. Tinnitus usually manifests as a ringing or buzzing, but can also manifest as other noises, like screeching, thumping, or humming. The sounds are usually rhythmic in nature. Tinnitus will typically clear itself up after a short time period. In less common cases, tinnitus may become effectively permanent, a condition known as chronic tinnitus.

Tinnitus is so prevalent for a couple of reasons. Firstly, environmental factors that can play a role in tinnitus are rather common. Root conditions and injuries can bring about tinnitus symptoms and that accounts for the second reason. And there are a wide variety of conditions and injuries that can result in tinnitus. Tinnitus is quite common for these reasons.

How is tinnitus impacted by environmental factors?

There are a large number of factors that can bring about tinnitus symptoms, including ototoxic chemicals and medications. But when it involves “environmental” triggers, noise is the biggest culprit. Some locations, such as noisy city streets, can get really loud. Likewise, anyone who works around industrial equipment all day would be at risk of their environment worsening their tinnitus.

When assessing the state of your health, these environmental factors are really significant.

As with hearing loss, noise-associated damage can eventually trigger tinnitus symptoms. When tinnitus is caused by noise damage, it’s usually chronic and often permanent. Some of the most prevalent noise and environment-induced causes of tinnitus include the following:

  • Music: Listening to music at high volumes is a pretty common practice. Tinnitus will frequently be the result if you do this frequently.
  • Noise in the workplace: It might come as a surprise that lots of workplaces, sometimes even offices, are fairly noisy. Tinnitus can eventually result from being in these settings for eight hours a day, whether it’s industrial equipment or the din of lots of people talking in an office.
  • Events: If noise is loud enough, even over short intervals, tinnitus can sometimes be the result. Shooting a gun or going to a rock concert are examples of this type of noise.
  • Traffic: Traffic in heavily populated places can be much louder than you might expect it to be. And you may not even realize that your ears can be damaged at lower volumes than you may expect. Tinnitus and hearing damage can be the result of long commutes in these noisy locations.

People frequently mistakenly believe hearing damage will only occur at extreme volume levels. As a result, it’s essential to use hearing protection before you think you may need it. Hearing protection can help you avoid tinnitus symptoms from developing in the first place.

If I have tinnitus, what should I do?

Will tinnitus clear up by itself? Maybe, in some cases. But your symptoms may be irreversible in some cases. At first, it’s basically impossible to tell which is which. If you have tinnitus due to noise damage, even if your tinnitus does clear up, your chance of having your tinnitus return and become chronic is much more likely.

People often underestimate the minimum volume that damage starts to occur, which is the most significant contributing factor to its development. Damage has likely already happened if you’re experiencing tinnitus. If this is the situation, finding and changing the source of the noise damage is crucial to prevent further damage.

Here are some tips you can try:

  • Reducing the volume of your environment where possible. For instance, you could close the windows if you live in a loud area or turn off industrial equipment that isn’t in use.
  • Using hearing protection (either earplugs or earmuffs) in order to prevent damage. Noise canceling headphones can also be an asset in this regard.
  • Decreasing the amount of time you spend in noisy environments without giving your ears a chance to recover.

Dealing with symptoms

The symptoms of tinnitus are frequently a big distraction and are really uncomfortable for most individuals who deal with them. As a result, they often ask: how do you calm tinnitus?

If you hear a ringing or buzzing sound, it’s essential to schedule an appointment, particularly if the sound doesn’t go away. We can help you figure out the best way to handle your particular situation. There’s no cure for the majority of kinds of chronic tinnitus. Symptom management may include the following:

  • Hearing aid: This can help amplify other sounds and, as a result, drown out the ringing or buzzing produced by tinnitus.
  • Masking device: This device is a lot like a hearing aid, only instead of boosting sounds, it masks them. The exact calibration of your device will depend on your specific symptoms.
  • Retraining therapy: In some situations, you can work with a specialist to retrain your ears, slowly modifying the way you process sound.
  • White noise devices: In some instances, you can tune out some of your tinnitus symptoms by utilizing a white noise generator around your home.
  • Relaxation techniques: High blood pressure has sometimes been linked to an increase in the severity of tinnitus symptoms. So taking a little time to relax (with meditation, for example) can sometimes help reduce your tinnitus symptoms.

There’s no cure for tinnitus. That’s why controlling your environment to safeguard your hearing is a great first step.

But treating and managing tinnitus is possible. We’ll be able to formulate a specific treatment plan based on your hearing, your tinnitus, and your lifestyle. A white noise machine, for many people, may be all that’s needed. For other people, management might be more intense.

Learn how to best manage your tinnitus by making an appointment right away!

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The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.