Though it’s true that there is at this time no scientifically-verified method to cure tinnitus, researchers are hard at work to identify one. In the meantime, a range of tinnitus therapy options exist that can grant considerable relief.
Think about it this way. When you have a headache, you take Tylenol despite the fact that it doesn’t “cure” your headache. Pain relievers merely make the pain disappear into the background to ensure that it doesn’t impact your day. In the same way, tinnitus therapy can help lower the degree of symptoms so that your tinnitus has minimal influence on your daily routine.
Seeing as everyone responds to tinnitus in a different way, there’s no one-size-fits-all treatment. You’ll have to work with your provider to uncover the approach that is ideally suited for for you.
Here are some of those options.
Tinnitus Treatment Solutions
If you are suffering from tinnitus, you’ll want to explore the following treatment options with your hearing care or healthcare provider.
Treatment of the underlying ailment
While most instances of tinnitus are not curable—and are derived from hearing loss or other non-reversible injury—certain cases are brought on by an underlying physical ailment. You’ll want to rule these out prior to seeking other treatment options.
Possible physical causes of tinnitus include jaw joint issues (temporomandibular joint, or TMJ dysfunction), excessive earwax or any other blockages in the ear canal, head and neck injuries, and reactions to specific medications.
The intensity of tinnitus symptoms can fluctuate depending on all-around health. Taking actions to strengthen general fitness is, consequently, something tinnitus patients can get started on immediately to lessen the severity of symptoms.
Every patient is unique, and what works out for someone else might not work for you. The purpose is to try out various activities to discover what is most effective.
Activities that have shown promise include instituting a healthy diet, achieving plenty of physical exercise, meditating, and engaging in activities like cycling, which can conceal the sounds of tinnitus.
Tinnitus is commonly associated with hearing loss and hearing injury. In reaction to diminished stimulation from outside sound, the brain goes through maladaptive changes that lead to the perception of tinnitus.
By increasing the magnitude of external sound, hearing aids can help mask the tinnitus, making the sounds of tinnitus less perceptible. Hearing aids also supply enhanced sound stimulation to the brain, which is considered to be neurologically beneficial.
Sound therapy is basically the delivery of sound in the form of white noise, pink noise, or nature sounds to minimize the perceived burden or severity of tinnitus.
Sound therapy functions by masking the tinnitus and additionally by teaching the brain to reclassify the sounds of tinnitus as inconsequential. This twofold effect can lower the short and long-term degree of tinnitus.
Sound therapy can be provided through special tabletop gadgets, but also through portable multimedia devices and even through hearing aids. Medical-grade sound therapy makes use of customized sounds that match the pitch of the individual’s tinnitus for optimal outcomes.
Keep in mind that tinnitus is the sense of sound in the brain when no external sound is present. The affliction is, for that reason, very subjective, and each person reacts a unique way.
In fact, whether or not the person perceives tinnitus as debilitating or minor is largely due to psychological tendencies and not to the loudness or pitch of the tinnitus. That’s why cognitive/behavioral approaches to tinnitus therapy have been shown to be highly effective.
Several techniques exist, including Mindfulness-Based-Stress-Reduction (MBSR) and Tinnitus-Retraining-Therapy (TRT), which brings together cognitive-behavioral-therapy with sound therapy.
Although there are no current FDA-approved medications for tinnitus, antianxiety and antidepressant medications are regularly utilized to treat the behavioral responses to tinnitus. These medications do not appear to impact tinnitus itself, but may offer much-needed relief if thought appropriate by your doctor.
The search for a tinnitus cure is on-going. A variety of experimental therapies are in development or testing and new methods become available every year. If your tinnitus is severe, and you’ve achieved very little benefit from existing therapies, you may be a candidate for one of these leading edge treatment options.
Check out the Experimental Therapies page at the American Tinnitus Association website for more information.
Obtain Relief For Your Tinnitus
Tinnitus is being aggressively investigated, with new findings and potential treatment methods introduced every year. Even today, there are a variety of promising treatments that, while not providing a cure, can provide considerable relief. You owe it to yourself to look into these options, remain positive and persistent in your tinnitus care, and work with your provider to adjust your treatment plan for the best results.