The American Tinnitus Association reports that 60 million adults in the U.S. experience tinnitus. This phantom ringing in the ears can have many different underlying causes, and each case is unique. Some people who experience tinnitus never seek treatment from an audiologist because they’ve heard there’s no cure for it. While there is no universal cure, there are many current and developmental treatments that can address the source of your tinnitus or at least alleviate its symptoms.

Treating hearing loss can treat tinnitus

Exposure to inner-ear damaging noise levels is one of the most common causes of tinnitus and often results in a permanent hearing loss. Treating this hearing loss with hearing aids or cochlear implants can effectively treat the annoying ringing in your ears at its source. If you suspect hearing loss is the source of your tinnitus, schedule a full evaluation with an audiologist in your area.

Treating the underlying condition

Besides hearing loss, other medical conditions like diseases, illnesses, ear infections, earwax blockage, head and neck injuries, and even the medications used to treat them, can trigger tinnitus. When you visit an audiologist, they’ll gather a detailed medical history along with your symptoms and use them to determine if your tinnitus has one of these underlying causes. Because an audiologist is well versed in treating tinnitus, they will have a variety of different suggestions to help relieve symptoms.

Overcoming the symptoms

Special medications, white noise generators, masking devices and psychological or behavioral therapies can help alleviate the symptoms of tinnitus where no hearing loss or underlying medical condition can be found. Many audiologists are qualified to administer these types of treatments, which may not eliminate tinnitus, but can help you live a normal life despite it.

Additionally, a combination of these relief methods can be used to help a person suffering from tinnitus cope. Combinations of behavioral therapies and hearing aids with tinnitus-masking features have proven to be incredibly helpful for people experiencing physical and emotional symptoms because of tinnitus.  

Tinnitus can be a difficult diagnosis to pinpoint and treat, but the first step is to reach out for help. Untreated tinnitus can cause individuals to withdrawal socially or experience anxiety and depression. Contact an audiologist with the knowledge and training to get to the source of your tinnitus and treat it, or at least provide you with the tools and therapies to overcome it.