How do I know if I have tinnitus?

Most people recognise tinnitus as a condition in which sufferers hear a constant ringing in their ears. Whilst many people with tinnitus do indeed hear ringing, however, the sound could also be described as a roaring, clicking or hissing. The sound heard differs from person to person.

If you fear that you may be suffering from tinnitus, it is important not to panic and to understand that it is not a disease in itself. Rather, it is a symptom that may stem from a whole range of health issues, many of which are not serious.

If you suspect that you have tinnitus, it is important to visit a medical professional for an evaluation. In the meantime, however, you may wish to ask yourself the following questions. The answers may help indicate whether it is indeed tinnitus you are suffering from.

1. Do other people hear similar noises?

With tinnitus, only the person with the condition will hear buzzing or ringing sounds. If you and a friend hear a buzzing at the same time, it may simply be an electrical appliance!

2. Do you spend lots of time around loud sounds?

If you work around loud sounds for long stretches at a time, you may start to suffer from hearing loss and, by extension, tinnitus. If you work on a building site with loud machines or play music in a band, you are at risk of developing tinnitus. The best way to combat this is to wear ear protection.

3. Are you on tinnitus-causing medication?

Lots of drugs can cause tinnitus, including common medications such as aspirin and ibuprofen. If you’re worried that medications are causing your tinnitus, have a discussion with your doctor.

4. Are you suffering from an ear infection or a cold?

Infections of the ear or sinuses can cause a build-up of pressure in your inner ear, something that can trigger tinnitus. In this situation, addressing the infection itself should be your main priority and will help to ease your symptoms.

5. Are you a migraine sufferer?

Whilst many people are familiar with the ways in which migraines can cause serious head pain and nausea, not many people know that they can also cause ear fullness, temporary hearing loss, and tinnitus.

6. Do you have jaw pain?

Damage to the ligaments or muscles of the jaw can lead to hearing problems, including tinnitus.

7. Do you have high blood pressure?

High blood pressure increases your chances of developing tinnitus. Addressing the cause of your high blood pressure should help to mitigate the problem.

8. Have you ever suffered from a serious neck or head injury?

Head injuries can cause tinnitus if they are associated with long-lasting nerve or muscle damage.

9. Do you drink high quantities of coffee or alcohol?

Surprisingly, simple lifestyle factors such as how much caffeine or alcohol you drink can affect whether you develop tinnitus. If you are concerned about your intake, it is a good idea to start cutting back to improve your tinnitus and, indeed, your overall health.

10. Are you stressed?

Tension and anxiety can trigger bouts of tinnitus.

11. Do you suffer from a long-term medical condition?

Conditions including fibromyalgia, diabetes, lupus, and rheumatoid arthritis have all been linked to tinnitus. If you suffer from an underlying health condition, it is worth mentioning this to your doctor or audiologist.

Seek tinnitus treatment today

If tinnitus is impacting your quality of life, it is well worth contacting our hearing experts who will be able to offer a tinnitus treatment that works for you. Get in touch with London Hearing today to book an appointment.