Even though it’s true that there is currently no scientifically-verified way to cure tinnitus, researchers are hard at work to uncover one. In the meantime, a number of tinnitus therapy options are available that can afford significant relief.
Think about it this way. If you have a headache, you take Tylenol regardless of the fact that it doesn’t “cure” your headache. Pain relievers merely make the pain diminish into the background to ensure that it doesn’t interfere with your day. Likewise, tinnitus therapy can help lessen the severity of symptoms so that your tinnitus has very little impact on your daily routine.
Considering everyone reacts to tinnitus differently, there’s no one-size-fits-all treatment. You’ll have to work with your provider to find the approach that is most effective for you.
Here are many of those options.
Tinnitus Treatment Options
If you are afflicted by tinnitus, you’ll want to discuss the following treatment options with your hearing care or healthcare provider.
Treatment of the underlying ailment
Whereas most instances of tinnitus are not curable—and are derived from hearing loss or other non-reversible injury—certain cases are caused by an underlying physical ailment. You’ll want to rule these out before pursuing other treatment modalities.
Possible physical causes of tinnitus include jaw joint problems (temporomandibular joint, or TMJ dysfunction), too much earwax or any other blockages in the ear canal, head and neck injuries, and side effects to select medications.
General Health And Well-being
The severity of tinnitus symptoms can fluctuate depending on overall health. Taking actions to improve general wellness is, consequently, one thing tinnitus patients can get started on right away to lessen the level of intensity of symptoms.
Every individual is different, and what works for someone else may not work for you. The idea is to try out different activities to learn what works best.
Strategies that have demonstrated promise include instituting a healthy diet, achieving adequate physical exercise, meditating, and participating in activities like cycling, which can mask the sounds of tinnitus.
Tinnitus is frequently associated with hearing loss and hearing damage. In response to diminished stimulation from external sound, the brain goes through maladaptive changes that bring on the perception of tinnitus.
By enhancing the magnitude of external sound, hearing aids can help mask the tinnitus, making the sounds of tinnitus less recognizable. Hearing aids also supply enhanced sound stimulation to the brain, which is considered to be neurologically favorable.
Sound therapy is basically the delivery of sound in the form of white noise, pink noise, or nature sounds to reduce the perceived burden or severity of tinnitus.
Sound therapy works by covering up the tinnitus and also by retraining the brain to recategorize the sounds of tinnitus as unimportant. This twofold effect can lessen the short and long-term intensity of tinnitus.
Sound therapy can be provided through special tabletop devices, but also through portable multimedia products and even through hearing aids. Medical-quality sound therapy makes use of customized sounds that match the pitch of the individual’s tinnitus for the best outcomes.
Remember that tinnitus is the perception of sound in the brain when no outside sound is present. The ailment is, for that reason, very personal, and each person reacts a unique way.
In fact, whether or not the individual perceives tinnitus as debilitating or minor is predominantly as a consequence of emotional tendencies and not to the loudness or pitch of the tinnitus. That’s why cognitive/behavioral solutions to tinnitus therapy have been demonstrated to be very effective.
Several therapies exist, including Mindfulness-Based-Stress-Reduction (MBSR) and Tinnitus-Retraining-Therapy (TRT), which merges cognitive-behavioral-therapy with sound therapy.
Although there are no current FDA-approved medications for tinnitus, antianxiety and antidepressant medications are frequently used to treat the behavioral responses to tinnitus. These drugs do not appear to impact tinnitus itself, but may supply much-needed relief if thought to be necessary by your doctor.
The search for a tinnitus cure is on-going. Many experimental therapies are in development or evaluation and newer techniques become available every year. If your tinnitus is significant, and you’ve experienced very little benefit from existing therapies, you may be a candidate for one of these innovative treatment options.
Visit the Experimental Therapies web page at the American Tinnitus Association website for additional information.
Obtain Relief For Your Tinnitus
Tinnitus is currently being aggressively studied, with new discoveries and prospective treatment options reported every year. Even now, there are several promising treatments that, while not offering a cure, can supply significant relief. You owe it to yourself to take a look at these options, stay positive and persistent in your tinnitus care, and work with your provider to modify your treatment plan for the greatest results.