Although it’s true that there is at this time no scientifically-confirmed method to cure tinnitus, researchers are hard at work to discover one. In the meantime, a variety of tinnitus therapy options are available that can provide substantial relief.
Think about it in this way. If you have a headache, you take Tylenol despite the fact that it doesn’t “cure” your headache. Pain relievers only make the pain fade into the background so that it doesn’t impact your day. Similarly, tinnitus therapies can help minimize the severity of symptoms so that your tinnitus has minimum affect on your daily schedule.
Since everyone reacts to tinnitus in a different way, there’s no one-size-fits-all treatment. You’ll have to work with your provider to determine the approach that works best for you.
Here are many of those options.
Tinnitus Treatment Options
If you suffer from tinnitus, you’ll want to explore the following treatment options with your hearing care or healthcare provider.
Treatment of the underlying ailment
Whereas the majority of instances of tinnitus are not curable—and are the result of hearing loss or other non-reversible damage—certain cases are the consequence of an underlying physical ailment. You’ll want to rule these out before seeking other treatment options.
Potential physical causes of tinnitus include jaw joint issues (temporomandibular joint, or TMJ dysfunction), excessive earwax or other blockages in the ear canal, head and neck injuries, and reactions to select medications.
General Health And Well-being
The degree of tinnitus symptoms can vary depending on all-around health. Taking actions to improve general health is, consequently, one thing tinnitus sufferers can get started on immediately to minimize the extent of symptoms.
Each person is unique, and what works out for someone else may not work for you. The idea is to try out different activities to learn what works best.
Activities that have demonstrated promise include instituting a healthy diet, achieving plenty of physical exercise, meditating, and partaking in activities like cycling, which can conceal the sounds of tinnitus.
Tinnitus is often connected to hearing loss and hearing injury. In response to reduced stimulation from outside sound, the brain undergoes maladaptive changes that give rise to the perception of tinnitus.
By increasing the magnitude of environmental sound, hearing aids can help mask the tinnitus, making the sounds of tinnitus less noticeable. Hearing aids also supply increased sound stimulation to the brain, which is presumed to be neurologically favorable.
Sound therapy is basically the delivery of sound in the form of white noise, pink noise, or nature sounds to decrease the perceived burden or severity of tinnitus.
Sound therapy functions by masking the tinnitus and additionally by teaching the brain to recategorize the sounds of tinnitus as inconsequential. This double effect can limit the short and long-term intensity of tinnitus.
Sound therapy can be provided through special tabletop gadgets, but also through portable media products and even through hearing aids. Medical-quality sound therapy uses individualized sounds that match the pitch of the individual’s tinnitus for optimal outcomes.
Remember that tinnitus is the sense of sound in the brain when no external sound is present. The ailment is, for that reason, highly subjective, and each person reacts a unique way.
In fact, whether or not the individual perceives tinnitus as debilitating or minor is largely due to emotional tendencies and not to the volume or pitch of the tinnitus. That’s why cognitive/behavioral solutions to tinnitus therapy have been proven to be exceptionally effective.
Several techniques exist, including Mindfulness-Based-Stress-Reduction (MBSR) and Tinnitus-Retraining-Therapy (TRT), which unites cognitive-behavioral-therapy with sound therapy.
While there are no current FDA-approved medications for tinnitus, antianxiety and antidepressant prescriptions are regularly utilized to treat the behavioral responses to tinnitus. These drugs do not appear to affect tinnitus itself, but may provide much-needed relief if thought necessary by your doctor.
The search for a tinnitus cure is ongoing. Several experimental therapies are in development or evaluation and new approaches become available each year. If your tinnitus is significant, and you’ve obtained little benefit from existing therapies, you might be a candidate for one of these cutting edge treatment options.
Check out the Experimental Therapies webpage at the American Tinnitus Association website for more information.
Find Relief For Your Tinnitus
Tinnitus is currently being aggressively investigated, with new discoveries and potential treatment options reported every year. Even now, you can find a variety of promising treatments that, while not supplying a cure, can supply significant relief. You owe it to yourself to check out these options, remain positive and persistent in your tinnitus care, and work with your provider to fine-tune your treatment plan for the greatest results.