What Is Tinnitus?
Tinnitus is a relatively common condition which occurs in all age groups, with over 30% of adults have suffered from some type of tinnitus, although for most it is very much a manageable condition.
Tinnitus is the therapeutic term for any noise an individual hears within the ears (or ear) when there is no external sound being and takes its name from the Latin for ringing. Those suffering from tinnitus experience anything from a steady beep to a sporadic chime, with some experiencing low volume, while others report a ‘wall of sound.’ The most common sound is a high pitched ring, but other symptoms include hearing humming, buzzing or whistling.
Tinnitus has a number of causes, with the most well known being noise exposure and infections of the ear, but there are more causes or contributors, and here is an overview of all the leading causes.
Ear infections can be a catalyst for tinnitus, either from the infection or as an ongoing symptom after it has cleared up. This can lead to discomfort and even loss of hearing so we recommend that at the first sign of infection you head to your doctor where they can diagnose and treat the infection correctly.
Most Famous Cause
The most well-known cause of tinnitus is exposure to loud noise, which is also a cause of hearing loss. This is particularly common when music has been listened to for hours at a time. Other loud noises, such as in the workplace are also responsible for tinnitus, so ensure the levels of noise you are exposed to is below the guidelines in the 2006 Noise at work Regulations.
Tinnitus is not caused directly by stress, but stressful situations contribute to it and in many cases will make existing tinnitus worse.
Medication which is ototoxic can be damaging to hearing, although there are very few medications that fall into this category. Ototoxic medicines are usually administered in cases of life-threatening or very serious conditions, and usage is closely monitored.
Tinnitus is cited as a side effect for a fair number of medicines and situations, but this does not mean everyone who does/takes it will suffer as everyone’s body reacts differently.
If working in a noisy environment has affected your hearing, then you may have a case for an industrial deafness claim.