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Can an Audiologist Help With Tinnitus?

Woman with Tinnitus

Have you recently hearing ringing or other sounds in your ear? You might have asked people around you and quickly established that they can't hear it at all. This strongly suggests that you are experiencing a condition known as tinnitus.

Tinnitus causes you to hear a sound that isn't actually there. This could be anything from ringing to buzzing or potentially a piece of music. It differs from person to person. You might be wondering whether an audiologist can provide assistance if you are suffering from this type of condition. An audiologist is an expert and highly trained in dealing with a wide variety of hearing conditions. So, will they be able to help you?

Is tinnitus curable?

It's important to be aware that in most cases the condition is not curable, but there are a few things to understand about this. First, there are two types of the condition, objective and subjective. One type has numerous solutions, and an audiologist can help here. This could involve something like removing an excessive level of earwax. The other type is not curable and accounts for the largest percentage of cases, but does have many methods available to provide relief. This form of tinnitus is caused by damage to your hearing, often due to exposure to loud noises or potential trauma. Despite not being curable, this type of tinnitus can still be treated.

Can an audiologist help?

If you go to an audiologist with tinnitus, the first thing they will do is check which type you have or if you are suffering from the condition at all. Once this has been established, they will ask you about whether you are exposed to loud noises on a regular basis. This could be at work or in your personal life. One of the most important factors to be aware of about tinnitus is that it can gradually get worse. That's why it's crucial that you start protecting your hearing. An audiologist will teach you how to do this with ear protection options that are available on the market.

While tinnitus cannot be cured or reversed, it's possible that you are not yet suffering from the full condition. This will be the case if your tinnitus is still recurring or happens infrequently. The longer tinnitus lasts, the more likely it is to be permanent. That's why it's crucial that you start using ear protection and avoiding loud noises as soon as possible.

Other treatments

There are various other treatments that an audiologist can offer to help you cope with your condition. For instance, they might recommend retraining therapy. The best way to think about this is to consider a ticking clock. A ticking clock is actually quite loud, but we won't hear it usually, even in a quiet room. Why is that? Well, it's because our brain recognizes that the noise isn't an important piece of information and so does not focus on it. Instead, the noises never reaches conscious thought or recognition. Retraining therapy is about teaching your brain to see tinnitus the same way. While the condition remains, it doesn't affect you as much because you won't notice it. This is actually rather fantastic, and while it does take practice, typically it will be worth it.

Another thing to be aware of is that tinnitus is often part of hearing loss. You find that your hearing starts to deteriorate and that you develop tinnitus at around the same time. That's why you may need hearing aids. With hearing aids, you will be able to make sure that your quality of life isn't impacted by hearing loss, but there's another benefit as well. Hearing aids can include masking technology. With masking technology, a noise is produced at the same frequency as your tinnitus to mask it. This noise will be more pleasant than the one that you typically hear.

Or, you can actually get the same type of tech in a sound box. This is particularly useful in the evenings. It's fair to say that tinnitus can seem a lot louder at night. One of the reasons for this is that the quiet environment means that it's all you can hear and there's no distraction. A sound box can cover this with the audio or rolling waves or even animals.

We hope this article has helped you understand more about the treatments for this condition. If you want to learn more about Audiology Clinics of Puerto Rico or you think you are suffering from tinnitus contact us at Aguadilla: 787-882-8585 or Mayaguez: 787-834-0660. We're here to provide the expert advice that you need.