Managing Tinnitus

Woman suffering with tinnitus and grimacing laying down in bed pressing a gray pillow to her ears.

The buzzing in your ear keeps worsening. It started off quietly enough, one of those “is it really there” sort of situations. But you’ve noticed how loud and constant the tinnitus sounds have become after a full day on the job at a construction site. Sometimes, it sounds like ringing or other noises. You don’t know if you should contact us or how ringing in your ears could even be treated.

The management of tinnitus (that’s what that ringing is called) will vary from person to person and depend significantly on the source of your hearing issues. But your own tinnitus therapy will share some common threads with others that can help you get ready.

What type of tinnitus are you experiencing?

Tinnitus is not uncommon. There can be a variety of causes for the ringing (or whatever tinnitus noises you’re hearing). That’s why tinnitus is often divided into two categories in terms of treatment:

  • Medical Tinnitus: Inherent medical problems, including ear infections, too much earwax, a growth, or other medical problems, can be the cause of tinnitus. Medical providers will typically try to treat the underlying issue as their primary priority.
  • Non-Medical Tinnitus: Tinnitus that is related to hearing damage or hearing loss is usually referred to as “non-medical” tinnitus. As time passes, exposure to damaging noise (such as the noise at your construction site) can cause constant, significant, and chronic tinnitus. Non-medical tinnitus is usually more challenging to manage.

The kind of tinnitus you have, and the underlying cause of the hearing affliction, will establish the best ways to manage those symptoms.

Treatments for medical tinnitus

Your medical tinnitus symptoms will typically clear up when the underlying medical issue is treated. Treatments for medical tinnitus could include:

  • Surgery: Doctors might decide to do surgery to eliminate any tumor or growth that could be causing your tinnitus symptoms.
  • Hydrocortisone: Some kinds of infections will not respond to antibiotics. For instance, antibiotics never work on viral infections. Hydrocortisone might be prescribed in these cases to manage other symptoms.
  • Antibiotics: If your tinnitus is caused by an ear infection (that is, a bacterial ear infection), your doctor might prescribe antibiotics. Your tinnitus symptoms will probably disappear when the infection clears up.

If your tinnitus is a result of a medical problem, you’ll want to contact us to receive individualized treatment options.

Managing non-medical tinnitus

Typically, medical tinnitus is much easier to diagnose and treat than non-medical tinnitus. Non-medical tinnitus has no cure particularly if it’s related to hearing impairment. Instead, treatment to improve quality of life by relieving symptoms is the normal course of action.

  • Hearing aids: If your tinnitus turns out to be more prominent as your hearing wanes, a hearing aid could help you control the symptoms of both ailments. The tinnitus symptoms probably seem louder because everything else gets quieter (due to hearing loss). A hearing aid can help hide the sound of your tinnitus by amping up the volume of everything else.
  • Noise-masking devices: These devices hide your tinnitus noises by producing enough white noise to allow the buzzing or ringing to fade into the background. These devices can be tuned to produce specific sounds created to balance out your tinnitus symptoms.
  • Cognitive-behavioral therapy: You can get training that will help you learn to ignore your tinnitus sounds. Cognitive-behavioral therapy is a widely utilized method created to help you reach just that.
  • Medications: There are some experimental medicines available for treating tinnitus. For instance, steroids and anti-anxiety medication mixtures can sometimes help decrease tinnitus symptoms. Still, you’ll want to talk to us before making any decisions about medications.

Find what works

For most of us, it won’t be immediately clear what’s causing our tinnitus, so it’s likely you’ll have to try numerous approaches in order to successfully treat your own hearing problems. Depending on the source of your buzzing or ringing, there may not be a cure for your tinnitus. But numerous different treatment options are available that could lessen the symptoms. Finding the best one for you is the trick.

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.