“What’s that annoying sound in my ears?” “Make that noise stop!”
You could be suffering from tinnitus, a common hearing affliction that manifests sounds in your ears that no one else can hear, if you find yourself making these kinds of statements. You’re not alone. Tinnitus is a condition that affects millions of people.
Ringing, pulsing, whistling, or buzzing are the sounds that the majority of people describe.
Ringing in the ears might seem harmless, depending on its severity. But there are absolutely times when you shouldn’t disregard it. Tinnitus symptoms can frequently be a sign of something more serious taking place in your body.
You need to take the following 6 symptoms seriously.
1. The Ringing in Your Ears is Affecting The Quality of Your Life
26% of people who suffer from tinnitus experience symptoms continuously, based on some studies.
Depression, anxiety, insomnia, and relationship problems are all possible consequences of this ever present ringing.
It can be a struggle between the tinnitus sound and something as simple as attempting to hear your friend tell you a recipe over the phone. The nonstop ringing has stressed you out to the point where you snap at a family member who simply asks you a question.
A vicious cycle can be the result of this constant ringing. The ringing gets louder as your stress level rises. And you get more anxious the louder the noise is and on and on.
If your tinnitus is contributing to these kinds of life struggles, you shouldn’t ignore it. It’s there, and your life is being affected. There are treatment choices that can significantly reduce or eliminate the noise in your ears.
2. After You Switched Medications, Your Ears Began to Ring
Whether you have chronic back pain or cancer, doctors might try several different medications to treat the same condition. Some of these will have side effects so severe that you might want to ask about alternate options. If your tinnitus began or got seriously worse after you started a new medication, look at that list of side effects and speak with your doctor.
Some common medications may cause tinnitus. Here are a few examples:
- Loop Diuretics
- Over-the-counter painkillers (Tylenol, Aleve, Advil, and even aspirin) when taken several times a day for an extended period of time.
- Opioids (Pain Killers)
3. Headache, Seizures, And Blurred Vision Come With Tinnitus Noises
This might be a sign that high blood pressure is contributing to your tinnitus. When you have hypertension, the blood flow to your inner ear is restricted. Unregulated high blood pressure is also dangerous for your overall health. Over time, it could cause or worsen age-related hearing loss.
4. You Always Seem to be Leaving Work, The Gym, or a Concert When You Hear it
If you only hear the tinnitus when you leave a loud place like a factory, concert, aerobics class, or bar, then the place you just left had noise levels above safe levels. If you neglect this occasional tinnitus and don’t start to protect your ears, it will likely become constant over time. And hearing loss will probably accompany it.
If you enjoy a noisy night out, take precautions such as:
- Standing a bit further away from loud speakers
- Using earplugs
- Giving your ears a regular break by going into the restroom or outside, if possible, at least once an hour
Adhere to the rules pertaining to earplugs and earmuffs if you work in a loud setting. They’re designed to protect you, but they only work if you wear protective gear correctly.
5. You Also Have Facial Paralysis
We hope you wouldn’t ignore facial paralysis regardless of whether you have ringing in your ears. But when the tinnitus symptoms are come along with headaches, paralysis, and nausea, this may be a sign of a slow-growing benign brain tumor called an acoustic neuroma.
6. Fluctuating Hearing Loss is Accompanying Tinnitus
Do you have hearing loss that seems to get worse, then get better, then worse again? Do you feel dizzy off and on? When accompanied by tinnitus, this indicates you need to be screened for Meniere’s disease. This causes a fluid imbalance in your ears. If left without treatment, it often gets worse and may increase your risks of serious falls due to lack of balance.
Hearing loss is often signaled by tinnitus. So you should have your hearing examined if you’re experiencing it. Reach out to us to make an appointment for a hearing test.