Lake Murray Hearing - Columbia and Lexington, SC

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“What’s that annoying sound in my ears?” “How can I make that sound go away?”

If you find yourself making these kinds of statements, you could have tinnitus, a common hearing condition where you hear noises or experience a sound that others don’t hear. This is more common than you might think. Tinnitus is a condition that affects millions of people.

Most describe it as ringing in the ears, but it can also sound like a pulsing noise, a dial tone, whistling, or buzzing.

Ringing in the ears may seem harmless, depending on its severity. But there are definitely times when you shouldn’t disregard it. Something more significant may be the root cause of these noises.

Here are 6 tinnitus symptoms you really should take seriously.

1. Your Quality of Life is Being Affected by The Ringing in Your Ears

Some studies demonstrate that 26% of tinnitus sufferers cope with that ringing on a nearly constant basis.

This aggravating, ever-present noise can lead to all kinds of relationship issues, insomnia, anxiety, and even depression.

Something as basic as listening to your daughter share a recipe on the phone becomes a struggle between her voice and the noise that overpowers it. The constant ringing has stressed you out to the point where you snap at a family member who asks you a question.

A vicious cycle can be the result of this continuous ringing. As your stress level goes up, the ringing gets louder. And you get more anxious the louder the noise is and on and on.

If your tinnitus is leading to these kinds of life challenges, you shouldn’t neglect it. It’s real, and it affects your quality of life. There are treatment choices that can considerably reduce or eliminate the noise in your ears.

2. The Noise in Your Ears Manifests After You Change Medications

Doctors may try several different medications to manage the same ailment whether you have chronic pain or cancer. Some of these will have side effects so significant that you might want to ask about alternatives. If your tinnitus started or got significantly worse after you started a new drug, look at that list of side effects and talk to your doctor.

Tinnitus may be caused by some common medications. Here are a few examples:

  • Opioids (Pain Killers)
  • Over-the-counter painkillers (Tylenol, Aleve, Advil, and even aspirin) when taken several times a day for an extended period of time.
  • Antibiotics
  • Loop Diuretics
  • Chemo

3. Headache, Seizures, And Blurred Vision Come With Tinnitus Noises

This normally means that your tinnitus symptoms are being triggered by high blood pressure. The blood circulation in your inner ear is restricted when you have hypertension. Your overall health is also in danger with high blood pressure. Age related hearing loss, over time, will worsen because of this.

4. You Only Hear it After You Leave a Gym, Concert, or Work

If you leave a noisy place such as a factory, bar, concert, or fitness class, and you begin to hear tinnitus noises, you were probably exposed to unsafe noise levels and that’s most likely the cause of these noises. It becomes increasingly likely that these noises will become permanent the more often you ignore them and neglect using ear protection. And it’s frequently accompanied by hearing loss.

If you love a loud night out, take precautions like:

  • At least once an hour, go outside or into the restroom to give your ears a break
  • Using earplugs
  • Not standing too close to the speakers

If you work in a noisy environment, adhere to work rules pertaining to earmuffs and earplugs. They’re designed to protect you, but they only work if you use protective gear correctly.

5. You Also Have Facial Paralysis

We hope you wouldn’t dismiss facial paralysis regardless of whether you have ringing in your ears. But when the tinnitus symptoms are accompanied by headaches, paralysis, and nausea, this may be a sign of a slow-growing benign brain tumor called an acoustic neuroma.

6. You Experience Fluctuating Hearing Loss With it

Are you experiencing hearing loss that comes and goes? Are you sometimes dizzy? If these symptoms are taking place along with tinnitus, you might need to get evaluated for Menier’s disease. This leads to a fluid imbalance in your ears. Your risk of falling caused by lack of balance will get worse if this disorder is left untreated.

Tinnitus is frequently a sign of hearing loss. So if you’re experiencing it, you need to have your hearing checked more frequently. Reach out to us to make an appointment for a hearing test.

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