Tinnitus is a condition which is characterized by hearing ringing sounds in the ears. The sounds may also include buzzing, whooshing or humming. The key thing about tinnitus is that these sounds are not present in the external world and can only be heard by the person with tinnitus. 

The condition is sometimes caused by damage to the ears, but it can also be caused by ear infections or other health issues. There are several treatment options for tinnitus, including the following.

Hearing aids

Tinnitus often goes hand in hand with hearing loss, this is because both conditions are caused by some degree of damage inside the ears. One of the best treatment options for tinnitus is special hearing aids which mask tinnitus sounds. Tinnitus hearing aids work by amplifying the background noise, encouraging the brain to focus on the external sounds, as opposed to the tinnitus sounds. 

Modern hearing care offers access to plenty of different hearing aids, to suit different preferences. In-the-ear (ITE) hearing aids go inside the ear, instead of behind them. Patients who prefer a discrete option often choose these styles. With two separate microphones, ITE can offer great sound quality. 

For an even smaller hearing aid, in-the-canal (ITC) hearing aids are barely noticeable. The smaller model can mean less battery life however these also provide top sound quality.

Sound machines

Sound machines are devices that play low background noise, this could be natural sounds, ambient sounds, white noise or generic background noise. The idea is that the noise distracts the person from the tinnitus noises, helping them to focus on their day. 

If you experience tinnitus you might use a sound machine to sleep or to concentrate when you’re at the office. Sound machines are a great option for those who do not experience hearing loss but do have tinnitus.

Tinnitus retraining therapy

Tinnitus retraining therapy is a program that helps people to process their tinnitus differently. The idea is about teaching the brain to block out the internal noises and refocus on external sounds. The therapy usually includes several elements, including counseling, psychological therapy, behavioral techniques and sound therapy.

These programs help those with tinnitus to explore which type of tinnitus they experience and reduce the impact on their daily life. Tinnitus retraining therapy also includes relaxation techniques and methods for stress management. For many who experience tinnitus, therapy is the most effective option, helping them to enrich their everyday lives.

Lifestyle modifications

In addition to help from your hearing care professional with available technologies, you can make lifestyle modifications to help alleviate your tinnitus symptoms. Habits like smoking and drinking can exacerbate tinnitus symptoms, along with high levels of stress and obesity. Talk to your hearing healthcare professional about ways you can remedy these issues to treat your tinnitus.