Woman grimacing with hand on the left side of her head suffering from tinnitus

Are you going crazy with that tinnitus in your ears? Find out what causes tinnitus and whether you might have inherited it.

What is tinnitus?

A ringing, buzzing, or droning in the ears with no outside cause of the noise is a condition called tinnitus. The direct translation of the term tinnitus is”ringing like a bell”.”

How will tinnitus affect my day to day living?

Tinnitus can interrupt personal connections in several aggravating ways. It’s usually an indication that you have damaged hearing or some underlying health condition and not a disease in and of itself. You might hear tinnitus in one ear or both ears and it can impede your ability to concentrate.

Tinnitus is always troublesome regardless of how it’s manifesting. Sleep loss, anxiety, and even depression can also be caused by tinnitus symptoms.

What causes tinnitus?

Tinnitus can be enduring or it can come and go. Short term varieties of tinnitus are normally brought on by prolonged exposure to loud noises, such as a rock concert. Tinnitus has been known to manifest with a few different medical issues.

A few of the conditions that might play host to tinnitus include:

  • Accumulation of excessive earwax
  • Prolonged exposure to loud noise
  • Changes in the structure of the ear bone
  • Inner ear cell damage and irritation of the delicate hairs used to conduct sound, causing arbitrary transmissions of sound to your brain
  • Meniere’s Disease
  • Injuries that impact nerves of the ear
  • Age-related hearing impairment
  • Inner ear infections
  • Several medications
  • Anxiety or depression
  • Bruxism, generally referred to as teeth grinding caused by temporomandibular joint problems, or TMJ disorder
  • Head or neck injuries
  • A benign tumor, called acoustic neuroma, forms on cranial nerve

Could I have inherited this ringing in my ears from my parents?

Tinnitus isn’t directly hereditary. But the symptoms can be influenced by your genes. You can, for instance, inherit a tendency for your ear bone to change. These changes are related to abnormal bone growth that can be handed down through family lines. Here are some other conditions you could have inherited that can result in tinnitus:

  • Certain diseases
  • Being prone to inner ear infections or wax build-up
  • Being predisposed to depression or anxiety

You can’t directly inherit tinnitus, but there are disorders that become breeding grounds for tinnitus which you could have inherited.

If your family has a history of tinnitus, you should certainly come in for an assessment.

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