You may have a typical reaction when you first notice that ringing in your ears: pretend everything’s ok. You continue your normal habits: you have a conversation with family, go to the store, and make lunch. While you simultaneously try your best to ignore that ringing. Because there is one thing you feel sure of: your tinnitus will go away naturally.
You begin to get concerned, though, when after a couple of days the ringing and buzzing is unrelenting.
This situation happens to others as well. At times tinnitus stop by itself, and other times it will linger on and that’s the reason why it’s a tricky little condition.
When Tinnitus is Likely to Subside by Itself
Around the globe, almost everybody has had a bout of tinnitus because it’s very common. Tinnitus is a non-permanent condition, in most cases, and will eventually vanish by itself. A rock concert is an excellent example: you go to your local stadium to see your favorite band and you discover, when you get home, that your ears are ringing.
The kind of tinnitus that is linked to temporary damage from loud noise will often decrease within a couple of days (but you realize that it’s just part of going to a loud performance).
Eventually hearing loss can develop from temporary or “acute” to permanent or “chronic” because of this exact type of injury. Too many of those types of concerts and you may wind up with permanent tinnitus.
When Tinnitus Doesn’t Seem to be Getting Better by Itself
If your tinnitus lingers for over three months it’s then classified as chronic tinnitus (but you should have it examined by a specialist long before that).
Something like 5-15% of people around the world have reported signs of chronic tinnitus. While there are some recognized close associations (such as loss of hearing, as an example), the causes of tinnitus aren’t yet really comprehended.
Often, a fast cure for tinnitus will be evasive if the causes aren’t obvious. There is a strong possibility that your tinnitus won’t disappear on its own if you have been hearing the ringing for more than three months. But if this is your situation, you can preserve your quality of life and manage your symptoms with some treatment options (such as noise canceling devices and cognitive behavioral therapy).
The Cause of Your Tinnitus is Significant
When you can determine the underlying cause of your tinnitus, dealing with the condition quickly becomes a lot simpler. As an example, if your tinnitus is produced by a stubborn, bacterial ear infection, treatment with an antibiotic will usually solve both problems, leading to a healthy ear and crystal-clear hearing.
Here are some likely causes of acute tinnitus:
- Eardrum damage (such as a perforated eardrum)
- A blockage in the ear or ear canal
- Chronic ear infections
- Meniere’s disease (this usually has no cure and is often associated with chronic tinnitus)
- Hearing loss (again, this is often associated with chronic tinnitus)
The Big Question…Will my Tinnitus Ever go Away?
In general, your tinnitus will go away on its own. But it becomes progressively more likely that you’re coping with chronic tinnitus the longer these noises last.
You can persuade yourself there’s nothing wrong and hope that the buzzing will just stop. But there could come a point where your tinnitus starts to become distressing, where it’s tough to concentrate because the sound is too disruptive. And in those instances, you might want a treatment plan more comprehensive than crossing your fingers.
The majority of the time tinnitus is simply the body’s response to loud noise that could be damaging over time and will recede by itself. Only time will tell if your tinnitus is chronic or acute.