Does Tinnitus Resolve on Its Own?

Almost 50 million Americans experience some form of tinnitus according to statistics cited by the American Tinnitus Association. It’s more common in folks over age 50 and may be a temporary or chronic condition that causes significant disability for about 2 million people across the nation.

Fortunately, there is treatment available for tinnitus, starting with an accurate diagnosis of what’s causing your symptoms. Our expert team at Petoskey Ear, Nose & Throat Specialists is happy to explain what tinnitus is, what may cause it, and how our specialists can help.

Understanding tinnitus

Tinnitus refers to a sound you can plainly hear internally that has no external source. It may be described as:

The noises can vary from a relatively low background noise to a high-pitched squeal that can make it difficult to hear external sounds. Tinnitus can remain constant or come and go, and it may occur in one or both ears. More rarely, tinnitus occurs as a whooshing sound that seems to keep time with your heartbeat. 

What causes tinnitus?

Tinnitus may be linked to:

Other medical conditions such as diabetes, thyroid disorders, and autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis can also cause tinnitus.

Notably, the type of sound you hear often helps identify the cause of your tinnitus. A high-pitched ringing, the most common type, is typically related to hearing loss, prolonged noise exposure, or medication. A pulsing or humming in your ears that frequently occurs with position changes is usually related to blood vessel (vascular) changes.

When should I seek treatment for tinnitus?

Treatment for tinnitus varies and may not be necessary if your experience with unexplained noises in your ears is brief and not problematic. Some people, for instance, report tinnitus lasting five minutes or less that may occur in response to a sudden loud noise.

However, our ENT specialists generally recommend you come in for an evaluation if you’re experiencing tinnitus that:

Effective treatment begins with an accurate diagnosis that may include an ear exam and hearing evaluation, imaging studies (CT or MRI scan), and various lab tests.

Your Petoskey provider then designs a treatment strategy to address the underlying cause of your tinnitus which may include:

For outstanding ENT care that’s designed to fit your needs, schedule a visit at Petoskey Ear, Nose & Throat Specialists today. We have offices in Petoskey, Gaylord, and St. Ignace, Michigan.

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