In a lot of ways, there is still a great deal of mystery surrounding the condition known as tinnitus. Though audiologists have been treating tinnitus for decades, many questions remain about what exactly it is and what causes it. One of the most commonly asked questions is: Is there a cure for tinnitus? In this article, we will discuss that question and finally put to rest the concept of a cure for tinnitus.
What is Tinnitus?
Before delving into the issue of whether or not the condition known as tinnitus is curable, it’s important to first provide a quick overview of exactly what living with tinnitus entails. According to Harvard Medical School, over 50 million Americans deal with tinnitus, which is a condition that is characterized by ringing, buzzing, humming, or any other persistent noise in the ears that no one else can hear but you. Tinnitus is specific to each individual person, so the sound that you hear may be very different from the sound that someone else is experiencing, according to soundrelief.com. In addition, tinnitus may be caused by a number of factors, including structural damage to the ear, exposure to loud noises over a period of time, aging, or genetics.
Indeed, tinnitus can be a debilitating condition, and it can be one that disrupts every aspect of your life. Having a persistent sound constantly ringing in your ears can make it extremely difficult to concentrate, even on the simplest tasks. It also can make communication difficult, as it may be hard to focus on what people are saying or even hear them at all over the roar of your tinnitus. Furthermore, tinnitus can cause a host of anxiety and stress-related issues and can even result in crippling conditions such as insomnia or isolation.
Is There a Cure for Tinnitus?
Because tinnitus can be so disruptive, many people wonder about a cure. While it may sound discouraging, the truth is that there is no cure for tinnitus. However, this may not be for the reasons you think.
It’s first important to understand that tinnitus has its roots in the brain. The noise you’re hearing is not simply coming from your ears. Because of this fact, tinnitus is actually a very complex condition that can be caused by many factors. Thus, it’s important to understand that tinnitus should be thought of as a symptom rather than a root cause, and thus, it cannot have a specific “cure.” In the same way that there is technically no cure for other symptoms, like a fever or cough, it’s critical to understand that tinnitus is “treatable” as opposed to “curable.”
However, the goal of tinnitus treatment is to dull the persistent noise so that it gets to a level wherein it is no longer bothersome and, hopefully, it can no longer be heard altogether. While this can take some time, it is possible for tinnitus to be treated effectively. Thus, while audiologists will tell you that there is technically no cure, they will also emphasize that there are many extremely effective treatment options that will make living with tinnitus much more bearable and pleasant overall.
How is Tinnitus Evaluated?
Tinnitus can be both evaluated and treated in a number of ways. However, regardless of your treatment plan, the first step to combating tinnitus is to visit a qualified audiologist. They will begin with an initial consultation in which they will discuss the ways in which your tinnitus is manifesting and the impact that it’s having on your daily life. Furthermore, your audiologist should take a complete medical history in order to understand any situational or genetic factors which are playing into your condition.
Additionally, your audiologist will want to administer a hearing test which can help them understand your personal experience. In order to further analyze your unique case, your specialist will look at the physical condition of your ears, as there are indeed external and internal factors that
can be impacting your tinnitus. For example, your audiologist may look for a buildup of earwax as well as possible structural damage.
Once they understand if there are any external factors at play, your team of specialists can move into what is commonly known as a pure-tone test in which they will evaluate your level of hearing. They will look at factors such as the level of sound which is perceptible to you and will seek to understand the intensity of your tinnitus, as well as the way in which the sound manifests.
Will The Noise from My Tinnitus Ever Be Completely Gone?
Many people worry that they will never receive relief from the persistent roar of their tinnitus. However, there is hope. While specialists won’t say that tinnitus is “curable,” they will say that it is “treatable,” and skilled audiologists who specialize in tinnitus will assure you that much can be done to keep your tinnitus at the lowest possible level, offering you serious relief.
In fact, there are many tinnitus success stories that show that people who were once living with unbearable symptoms have since made a significant recovery. In addition, there are many qualified audiologists throughout the United States who specialize in tinnitus recovery.
One of the most successful ways in which audiologists help to reduce the sound of tinnitus is through the use of sound therapy. Sound therapy can be used to reduce the level and manifestation of your tinnitus in a number of ways. For example, specific noises, such as white noise, may be used to mask the sound of your tinnitus. Additionally, pleasant sounds can be used in your hearing device in order to distract your attention away from the sound of your tinnitus and towards something more mild and relaxing. Furthermore, a practice known as neuromodulation seeks to actually rewire your brain and provide significant relief from your tinnitus symptoms.
Thus, it can be seen that, while your tinnitus may always remain present, there are very real ways to reduce your symptoms so that they may become significantly quieter, even to the point of being imperceptible. At the very least, a skilled team of specialists can help you to reduce your tinnitus symptoms as much as possible and also give you the skills necessary to live your best life. If you or someone you love is suffering from tinnitus, contact a qualified audiologist today in order to start finding relief. To find out more about your tinnitus, take this tinnitus impact survey.
Source: Sound Health Doctor