“Why am I hearing a ringing noise in my ears?” “Make that noise stop!”
You might be suffering from tinnitus, a common hearing disorder that manifests sounds in your ears that no one else can hear, if you find yourself making these kinds of statements. This is more common than you may think. Tinnitus is a disorder that impacts millions of individuals.
Ringing, buzzing, pulsing, or whistling are the sounds that most people describe.
Ringing in the ears may seem harmless, depending on its intensity. But there are definitely times when you shouldn’t disregard it. Something more serious may be the root cause of these sounds.
Here are 6 tinnitus symptoms you really should take seriously.
1. The Ringing in Your Ears is Affecting The Quality of Your Life
26% of individuals who suffer from tinnitus cope with symptoms constantly, according to some studies.
Depression, anxiety, insomnia, and relationship problems are all possible consequences of this ever present ringing.
Something as easy as listening to your daughter share a recipe over the phone becomes a battle between her voice and the noise that overpowers it. The nonstop ringing has stressed you out to the point where you snap at a member of the family who asks you a question.
A vicious cycle can be the outcome of this continuous ringing. As your stress level rises, the ringing gets louder. Loud noise makes you more anxious and so on.
If tinnitus is contributing to these kinds of life challenges, it’s time to address it. It’s real, and it impacts your quality of life. The noise can be reduced or eliminated with obtainable treatment options.
2. After You Changed Medications, Your Ears Began to Ring
Whether you have persistent back pain or cancer, doctors may try several different medications to deal with the same ailment. Some of these will have side effects so severe that you may want to ask about alternatives. If your tinnitus started or got significantly worse after you started a new drug, check that list of side effects and speak with your doctor.
Tinnitus may be caused by some common medications. Here are a few examples:
- Loop Diuretics
- Opioids (Pain Killers)
- Over-the-counter painkillers (Tylenol, Aleve, Advil, and even aspirin) when taken several times a day for an extended period of time.
3. It Comes With Headache, Blurred Vision, or Seizures
This may be a sign that high blood pressure is triggering your tinnitus. When you have hypertension, the flow of blood to your inner ear is restricted. Your overall health is also in danger with high blood pressure. Age related hearing loss, as time passes, will worsen because of this.
4. You Always Seem to be Leaving Work, The Gym, or a Concert When You Hear it
If you only hear the tinnitus after you leave a noisy place such as a factory, concert, aerobics class, or bar, then the place you just left had unsafe levels of noise. If you neglect this episodic tinnitus and don’t begin to protect your ears, it will most likely become permanent over time. And it’s usually accompanied by hearing loss.
If you’re going to be exposed to loud sound, use the following to protect your hearing:
- Giving your ears a regular break by stepping into the restroom or outside, if possible, at least once an hour
- Not standing too close to the speakers
- Wearing earplugs
If you work in a loud environment, adhere to work rules pertaining to earmuffs and earplugs. They’re designed to protect you, but they only work if you use protective gear correctly.
5. You Also Have Facial Paralysis
Whether you have ringing in your ears or not, you should never dismiss facial paralysis. But when you have nausea, paralysis, headaches, and you also have tinnitus, it’s possible that you might have an acoustic neuroma (a slow growing benign brain tumor).
6. You Experience Fluctuating Hearing Loss With it
Do you experience hearing loss that seems to get worse, then get better, then worse again? Are you sometimes dizzy? When accompanied by tinnitus, this suggests you need to be evaluated for Meniere’s disease. This leads to a fluid imbalance in your ears. If left untreated, it often gets worse and might increase your risks of significant falls caused by lack of balance.
Tinnitus is frequently a sign of hearing loss. So if you’re experiencing it, you need to have your hearing examined more frequently. Call us to make an appointment.