It started years ago as something in the distant background. Maybe you can’t even remember when it started – the buzzing, chirping, whistling, whooshing, roaring, ticking, clicking or humming noises in your head. At first, the noises, also known as tinnitus (Latin for “ringing”) were hardly even noticeable. Just a distant hum in your head. But things have changed – they’ve gotten worse.
The noises are beginning to interfere with your daily activities – in a negative way. And sleeping – one thing you used to take for granted – is now being compromised as you lay awake some nights trying to ignore the cacophony in your head. You may wonder if there is a medical treatment for tinnitus.
Unfortunately, the chances that your tinnitus has a medically-related cause are slim indeed. Most folks will suffer the maddening effects of tinnitus their entire lives without ever finding a treatable cause.
There are a very few medical maladies that have been proven to cause tinnitus. And, some of these conditions can be treated, providing some relief for the noises in your head. I’ll cover a couple here.
- Meniere’s Disease. Named after the French physician Prosper Meniere in 1861, this disease is an abnormality of the inner ear and can cause a host of symptoms. Vertigo (severe dizzyness), fluctuating hearing loss and a sensation of pressure and pain in the afflicted ear. And, Meniere’s Disease can directly cause the roaring, ringing and whooshing sounds of tinnitus. Symptoms include a sudden and whirling dizziness, severe nausea, vomiting and sweating than can force the sufferer to lie down. Diagnosis can be confirmed with a sophisticated hearing test. There is no cure for Meniere’s Disease, but there can be medical relief for the symptoms, including medical treatment for tinnitus. The treatment involves reducing the body’s retention of fluids by reducing the intake of salt and caffeine, among other things. Also, treatment with the antibiotic gentamycin directly into the middle ear is gaining popularity.
- Allergies (hayfever,etc.) Believe it or not, the allergens that produce the body’s autoimmune response to common outdoor plants and trees (and some indoor items as well) can cause a case of tinnitus. Sometimes, unknown to the tinnitus sufferer, excess mucous production due to allergic reactions can result in an increased ear pressure – and the resulting ringing and buzzing noises in the ear. In this case, the medical treatment for tinnitus would involve a direct treatment for the allergies themselves.
If you suspect that you may have Meniere’s Disease or even simple allergies, see a qualified medical doctor for a correct diagnosis. Only then can you put together a plan to fight your tinnitus.