Tinnitus is a common hearing condition that can range in severity, from
How to Recognize the First Signs of Tinnitus
Tinnitus is a common hearing condition that can range in severity, from light ringing in the ears that lasts for a temporary period, to severe noise that can significantly affect quality of living. Like many hearing conditions, early diagnosis and treatment is important to reduce its harmful effects.
It’s best not to worry too much should you notice tinnitus – experiencing tinnitus now doesn’t necessarily mean you’re going to experience it forever. The best way to combat tinnitus, however, is to do our utmost to prevent it, especially if we work in fields where exposure to loud, noisy and stressful stimuli is common. Tinnitus can also occur as a result of injuries such as head trauma.
In general, tinnitus tends to be separated into two categories. The former is subjective tinnitus, where damage to the inner, middle or outer ear, most often caused by exposure to constant loud noise, is present. The latter, objective tinnitus, is tinnitus that doctors are actually able to hear by utilizing the right equipment. This may be caused by muscle contractions, or even a blood vessel problem.
The important consideration is that when tinnitus is present, it’s real to you. This means understanding the common first signs can help you get started:
The Ringing Comes and Goes
Tinnitus doesn’t always start as a complete and total ringing sensation that retains its same pitch and frequency. It may come and go, seemingly for no purpose, or perhaps at times when you feel stressed. Additionally, if you hear banging or thumping, as if someone were playing a percussion instrument (especially if it repeats), pulsatile tinnitus may be the case. Additionally, music hallucinations can sometimes be part of tinnitus in the long term. If you encounter any of these issues, no matter how mild, make sure you speak to a qualified audiologist.
You’re Experiencing Clear Hearing Loss
While hearing loss and tinnitus are considered separate conditions, they’re certainly not exclusively experienced. If an audiologist is assigned to help you diagnose a hearing problem, they may ask you if you’ve been hearing sounds or have been encountering any onset tinnitus-like ringing or noises. Hearing loss may not signify tinnitus, but tinnitus can sometimes signify hearing loss.
In some cases, light ringing in the ears can be masked with music, distractions and day-to-day living. The symptoms may also be reduced through healthy living in some instances. Tinnitus, in this state, may be considered treatable or at least benign, as it doesn’t cause much in the way of harm and may not thoroughly affect your quality of living. Either way, it’s good to speak to your audiologist.
However, there are some signs that you may wish to source immediate treatment for peace of mind. Bothersome tinnitus that you can’t distract yourself from is a good first sign. If your tinnitus is compounded by any physical effects, such as vertigo, immediate treatment may be needed. If tinnitus is pulsatile as explained above, or in only one ear, then hastening your appointment is a good idea too.
The link between dental health and hearing health is closer than we may realize. A problem with improperly grown-in teeth, thorough reconstructive work or even cosmetic treatments can sometimes cause problems with our ears and the sensitive ‘circuitry,’ for lack of a better word, of the eardrum.
If you’ve noticed that dental issues seem to have an impact on the pressure in your ears, or if you’re experiencing tinnitus as a result of treatment or a lack of it, then it’s important to speak to both medical professionals so they can liaise and discuss your hearing loss treatment possibilities.
Visit an Audiologist Today!
Ultimately, only an audiologist can fully understand your hearing environment and are best positioned to provide you immediate care. Tinnitus is defined via a spectrum, and so it may be you have a mild case, or you may encounter a severe case. Treatments can vary, from recommended lifestyle changes all the way up to full-scale hearing aid devices and cochlear implants recommended.
The best audiologists understand that not unlike hearing loss, tinnitus can be a confusing and sometimes worrying condition to experience. This is why brands like Clifton Hearing make certain to provide a comforting patient experience each and every time. From undergoing our excellent hearing survey for better hearing to reading through our guide to hearing aids, we endeavor to education all of our potential and current patients so you feel empowered every step of the journey.
Please, contact us today by calling 315-496-4314 to speak with a friendly team member.