Have you experienced ringing, buzzing, or hissing in your ears? If so, you’re not alone. More than 50 million Americans experience this condition – known as tinnitus. The team at Audiology Clinic, Inc. can diagnose and treat tinnitus, offering you lasting relief from your symptoms.
Approximately 90% of individuals who experience tinnitus also have hearing loss. For some individuals, the brain compensates for hearing loss by turning up an “inner volume control” to amplify sounds that would otherwise go unnoticed – and so, tinnitus is born and a cycle of emotional distress begins.
What is Tinnitus?
Tinnitus is the perception of sounds, including ringing in the ears, which are not produced by a source outside of the body. It is a “phantom” perception generated somewhere in the auditory pathways. People experience this as ringing, buzzing, roaring, hissing, or rushing. About 20% of adults are affected by tinnitus, which can affect or interfere with an individual’s ability to hear, concentrate, and/or sleep at night. If untreated, tinnitus may lead to sleep disorders, depression, anxiety, anger and other psychological effects.
The main concept to treatment is to help manage and minimize the negative effects of the tinnitus and to break the negative emotional reaction that tinnitus so often causes.
For many patients, amplification is an effective first step in managing their tinnitus. Approximately 80% of patients report relief and lessening of their tinnitus symptoms simply using prescription-based digital hearing instruments. We now can also use a sound therapy approach by providing low-level sound generators built into the hearing instruments and adjust these sounds according to patient preference, reducing the starkness of the tinnitus. Research indicates that sound input needs to produce activity in the brain that is both reliable and synchronous in order to help break this negative cycle. Each patient can be given the sound input most compatible with their perception of what works best.
Other types of tinnitus treatment include:
- Cognitive behavioral therapy
- Tinnitus retraining therapy (TRT)
- Progressive tinnitus management therapy (PTM)
- Sound generators
- Sound stimulation
Our focus is on supporting the way the brain makes sense of sound and our treatment options and devices are built on this mindset.
Stop the buzzing today
The first step to treating your tinnitus is obtaining a diagnostic hearing evaluation completed by a licensed hearing care professional. Contact us today and schedule an appointment.