Do you have ringing in the ears? It might be tinnitus. Tinnitus is the term used to describe the perception of a sound which has no external source. It is a signal from the ear to the brain indicating something in the auditory system has changed. This perception can occur in one or both ears and is often described as a ringing, buzzing, hissing or humming sound. The awareness of tinnitus can range in occurrence from only occasional and mild to very loud and constant. It is reported that as many as 50 million Americans experience some degree of tinnitus, with as many as 12 million people reporting that the severity of their tinnitus impacts their daily lives.
What to do if you have Tinnitus:
- Get a thorough evaluation of your hearing to determine the overall health of your auditory system.
- Use hearing protection to prevent further exposure and potential damage to your auditory system.
- Use hearing aids to treat hearing loss if it is present. The perception of tinnitus is often reduced when speech and environmental sounds are amplified to appropriate levels.
- Get adequate rest and avoid fatigue.
- Avoid foods high in sodium and caffeine.
- Use sound therapy to provide therapeutic relief by masking tinnitus when it is especially bothersome.