Is Tinnitus Permanent Or is There Hope for Sufferers?
The most pressing question that any tinnitus sufferer asks is, is tinnitus permanent? To be able to answer this question more completely, it might be helpful if we explore the nature of the condition, including its causes and symptoms. The word “tinnitus” originated from the word “Tinnituae”, which means “ringing in the ear”. The condition is normally characterized by the ringing sensation on one or both ears. Individuals affected by the condition may perceive abnormal sounds, such as hissing, ringing, chirping, squealing or roaring.
Common Causes of Tinnitus
Hearing whirring or ringing sounds in your ear or ears with the absence of any external sources can be very annoying. There are times when the sounds can even obstruct your hearing sensation and among the most common causes of the condition is hearing loss, which is often associated with the aging process or due to an ear injury or trauma. The famous actor William Shatner first contracted tinnitus when he found himself too close to a special effects explosion while on the set for the Star Trek series. The condition can also be due to an infection that damaged the cochlea or it could be caused by the excessive exposure to loud noise.
Excessive earwax buildup can also result in tinnitus, as well as the excessive consumption of certain drugs known as ototoxic medications, such as bleomycin, aspirin, glycosides, furosemide, tetracycline and cisplatin. Head injuries, multiple sclerosis and neurological disorders can all result to ringing ears or tinnitus. Certain studies also confirmed that the condition is associated with metabolic disorders like vitamin B12 deficiency or thyroid problems, as well as certain psychological problems like anxiety, depression and stress. So is tinnitus permanent? The short answer is, it may all depend on the cause.
Prevalent Symptoms of Tinnitus
Is tinnitus permanent? The condition may become permanent in case the symptoms are overlooked in proper treatment is not administered. Although it can be managed, it would still be best to be able to address the condition early and cure it. To do this, you have to make sure that you are aware of the symptoms of the condition, which normally includes the following:
– Persistent ringing in one or both ears without any external sounds.
– Hearing sounds similar to clicking or rushing sound that normally goes along with the beating of the heart.
– The ringing sound inside the ear is usually accompanied by dizziness.
– Mild to severe headache can also be experienced in case you are suffering from tinnitus or ringing ears.
Various Treatment Options for Tinnitus
Is tinnitus permanent? Tinnitus is considered as a very common medical condition that can be experienced by anyone at one point in his/her life. In order to prevent the condition, there are certain precautionary measures that should be taken. In case you are diagnosed with tinnitus, there are certain treatments that can be administered to cure or manage the condition, and these treatment options include the following:
– Use of Ear Plugs: in case you are suffering from tinnitus due to the exposure to excessive noise, make sure that you use ear plugs to prevent the noise from damaging your ears, thus preventing the condition from worsening.
– Ear Drops: you may experience tinnitus if you are suffering from an ear infection. To cure this, make sure to seek the help of a specialist for proper diagnosis. Most of the time, specialists may recommend the use of ear drops that contains hydrocortisone to address the infection. Such types of ear drops are helpful in eliminating the ringing sound and the itching sensation due to the infection.
– Use of a Suction Device: in case the ringing in the ear is due to excessive earwax buildup, a suction device can be used to eliminate the earwax that is causing the condition, thus eliminating the ringing sound from the ear.
– Utilization of Tinnitus Mask: this is a certain type of hearing aid that can produce a more tolerable sound than the ringing in the ears. This serves as a distractor, which is helpful in curing the condition.
– Use of Medicines: in case the condition is due to an infection, there are certain medications that can be administered in order to manage the condition, such as antibiotics. If you are experiencing the condition due to anxiety or depression, antidepressants like amitriptyline can be prescribed by your physician.
– Use of Hearing Aids: if tinnitus is causing hearing loss then the best treatment that you can opt for is to use a hearing aid.
– Cognitive Behavioral Therapy: in this treatment option, the specialist will examine and diagnose if you have any unwanted thoughts, beliefs, attitudes and behavior using cognitive behavioral therapy. This will help determine what the root cause of the condition is, thus resulting in the administration of proper treatment.
– Surgery: in case the condition is chronic or if it is due to the development of a benign tumor, a surgery might be recommended to obtain permanent relief from the condition.
– Relaxation Therapy: various relaxation therapies can be done in order to manage the condition, such as meditation, hypnosis and yoga. All these are helpful in relieving stress and anxiety, especially if these are the causes of tinnitus, thus curing the condition.
– Vitamin Therapy: a small dose of Chinese foxglove root and Pulsatilla can be administered in order to cure the condition, and this is being used by herbalists as part of the vitamin treatment for the condition. These herbs are helpful in relieving palpitations, hearing loss, lightheadedness, headaches, blurred vision, neuralgia and exhaustion due to tinnitus.
– Other Treatments Options: aside from all the treatments mentioned above, there are other treatment options that can be administered for the condition, such as habituation therapies, biofeedback and electrical stimulation.
So Is Tinnitus Permanent?
As you can see, tinnitus conditions are not considered as a permanent condition, as it can be cured or at least managed using any of the treatments mentioned above or a combination of any of these. If you are experiencing frequent ringing sounds in one or both ears, it would be best to consult your physician or a specialist immediately. This is to determine the root cause of the condition and administer the right treatment for it. As mentioned, precautionary measures should also be taken in order to prevent the condition and you can ask your physician for more information on how to prevent tinnitus from recurring or worsening. For chronic tinnitus that might require surgery, the advantages and disadvantages of the option should be properly discussed with the physician as well.