What does Steve Martin, Vincent van Gogh, Chris Martin, Pete, Townshend, Ozzy Osbourne and Barbra Streisand all have in common??? Famous, sure, but did you know that each of those individuals suffer from tinnitus. They are not alone-the prevalence of tinnitus is estimated to affect as many as 360,000 Canadians, and 150,000 Canadians experience a degree of tinnitus that significantly affects their quality of life.
Let me begin by explaining what tinnitus is. Tinnitus is a ringing, humming, buzzing, or other sound in your head or ears that does not have an outside source. The sound comes from within your head. For most people, tinnitus is a constant sound. Tinnitus is NOT a disease – it is a symptom!
How can a “little noise” be so detrimental to so many people???
- Some individuals who suffer from tinnitus report:
- Feeling helpless and frustrated
- Difficulty falling or staying asleep
- Depressed or anxious
- Problem concentrating
- Reduced job performance
- Decreased productivity
- Family or relationship problems
- Avoiding social activities
- Suicidal thoughts
You might be reading my blog looking for a cure for tinnitus. Unfortunately research is still being done to find a cure; there is no cure yet. I wish there was a magic pill I could give my patients to silence their tinnitus; unfortunately no pill exists. What about “alternative” methods like acupuncture, hypnosis, vitamins/herbs or homeopathy? None of these methods have been shown by research to help people with tinnitus more than a placebo (a placebo is like a “sugar pill”).
There is help for your tinnitus! Research has shown that even though we cannot change the tinnitus, we can change our reactions to it! Changing the reactions to tinnitus can make it less of a problem. The key is to learn how to manage our reactions to tinnitus. The goal is to feel better even though the tinnitus does not change.
How are reactions to tinnitus managed?
Methods used at The Hearing & Dizziness Clinic include:
Sound-based methods (i.e. tinnitus masking, hearing aids)
EACH OF THESE METHODS HAVE BEEN SHOWN BY RESEARCH TO HELP SOME PEOPLE WITH TINNITUS!
Here at The Hearing & Dizziness Clinic we are empathetic to you and your tinnitus. Give our clinic a call if you would like to schedule a tinnitus evaluation with our Doctors of Audiology.
Thanks for reading!
Paige Pierozynski, Au.D