Tinnitus is a medical term that describes hearing noises when no outside source is present. Almost everyone experiences this phenomenon from time to time, but it usually doesn’t last long. For 20% of people, however, tinnitus causes recurring or persistent sound that can bring about significant stress and even affect ability to focus and sleep.
At Sharp Hearing Care Professionals — with convenient offices in Oxnard, Santa Barbara, West Hills, and Santa Monica, California — our team works tirelessly to help people gain an accurate diagnosis and effective treatment for ear problems, including tinnitus.
Do you hear sounds that others don’t? Here are a few signs that it could be due to tinnitus — and how we can help.
You may have heard that tinnitus can cause a ringing in the ear. In fact, people often refer to the condition as “ringing in the ears.” However, that’s not the only sound this condition can cause. Six of the most common include:
These sounds also vary from person to person. They can be soft or loud, come and go, or sound like water running or the inside of a seashell. In some cases, the sounds may even seem musical. Tinnitus symptoms can also cause a pulsing sensation in the ear instead of a particular noise.
If you hear any of these sounds when others don’t, our team can perform a hearing evaluation to see what’s behind your symptoms.
The exact cause of tinnitus isn’t known. However, it often develops because of a variety of ear problems, such as:
Tinnitus can also occur because of certain medications or be a sign of other medical conditions, like allergies, anemia, or high blood pressure. Very rarely, tinnitus can indicate an aneurysm or tumor.
Your chances of experiencing tinnitus increase with age, especially if you have diabetes, thyroid problems, temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ), a head injury, or obesity.
Tinnitus doesn’t cause problems for everyone. However, if the noises you hear become irritating or overwhelming, we can help.
The first step typically involves treating the underlying condition associated with your symptoms, like removing excess earwax. Other treatments for tinnitus include medications or tinnitus maskers. This special hearing aid helps relieve symptoms by generating low-level white noise to mask the sounds you hear.
Are you hearing noises others don’t hear? It could be tinnitus, and you don’t have to live with it. Contact the Sharp Hearing Care Professionals location near you to schedule an audiology consultation today.