Tinnitus Specialist

Petoskey Ear, Nose and Throat Specialists

Audiology & Otolaryngology located in Petoskey, MI & Gaylord, MI

If you have occasional or frequent ringing or buzzing in your ears, like 15-20% of Americans, you may have tinnitus. The team at Petoskey Ear, Nose and Throat Specialists in Petoskey and Gaylord, Michigan, diagnose tinnitus and offer treatments to reduce your symptoms and improve your hearing and quality of life. Call Petoskey Ear, Nose and Throat Specialists or schedule an appointment online today to learn more.

Tinnitus Q & A

What is tinnitus?

Tinnitus occurs when you can hear ringing or buzzing sounds that don’t come from an external source. Tinnitus isn’t an independent condition, but a symptom of other issues such as hearing loss, ear injuries, and circulatory disorders.

It’s classified as either subjective or objective. Subjective tinnitus can only be heard by you, while objective tinnitus can be heard by your doctor when they examine your ears and hearing.

Tinnitus causes phantom noises perceived as:

  • Buzzing
  • Clicking
  • Hissing
  • Humming
  • Ringing
  • Roaring

The perceived noise can vary, ranging from a mild, quiet background sound to a loud noise that drowns out other sounds.

What causes tinnitus?

Tinnitus is usually a sign of hearing loss such as age-related hearing loss or changes to your hearing after prolonged exposure to loud noise. You might also develop tinnitus as a side effect of an ear infection, an inner ear disease, or medication. In some cases, you may develop tinnitus as a side effect of stress.

When should I see a doctor about tinnitus?

Most people have tinnitus that comes and goes and doesn’t necessarily interfere with their life. However, if your tinnitus is severe and frequent or chronic, you should talk to one of the experts at Petoskey Ear, Nose and Throat Specialists and have your hearing tested. You should also make an appointment if your symptoms developed after an upper respiratory or ear infection and don’t subside within a week.

How is tinnitus diagnosed?

Your provider offers hearing tests, movement tests, and diagnostic imaging tests such as CT scans to diagnose the cause of tinnitus. Understanding the condition at the root of your symptoms informs the treatment plan and allows your provider to deliver a customized solution.

How is tinnitus treated?

Your provider at Petoskey Ear, Nose and Throat Specialists offers treatments designed to heal the condition causing your tinnitus and reduce your symptoms. For example, if you have an ear infection, earwax buildup, or circulatory problem, your doctor treats the underlying condition. They may adjust or change any prescriptions that contribute to the ringing in your ears.

Your provider might also recommend that you wear a hearing aid or tinnitus masker to reduce the ringing or buzzing in your ears. You might also consider using a white noise machine while you sleep to mask the phantom noises.

Call Petoskey Ear, Nose and Throat Specialists or schedule an appointment online today for expert tinnitus diagnosis and treatment.