Sheila is a single mom of three kids and a cat, and a RN health coach with a passion for teaching and motivating others how to be take charge of their health. In her lifetime Sheila has: raised organic produce and farm animals, developed and managed a successful farm to kitchen food business, home-schooled some pretty bright kids who are well on their way to great things, taken courses in online content writing and ghostwriting, written for other marketers as a ghostwriter, created websites, and read thousands of books.
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What’s That Ringing in My Ears?
If you're hearing a roaring, buzzing, ringing, hissing or tinkling noise in your ears and the sound is just not going away, you could have a condition called tinnitus. Though no one around you can hear those noises, chances are you aren't alone because tinnitus affects about 20% of people.
Exactly what causes tinnitus is really not known but there are many things that can trigger it or make it worse. Let's look at a few of them.
One of the most common causes of tinnitus is exposure to excessively loud noise. It can be a sudden, one-time, earsplitting noise, such as a gunshot close to your ear. Or it can be a long-term exposure over years, like the ongoing humming noise of factory work. Exposure of either kind can trigger a lifetime of tinnitus.
There is an increase in cases among the youth today and that is due to the popular use of ear buds and headphones to listen to loud, bass-heavy music. Not only can this result in tinnitus but you can also lose your hearing. Think your kids aren't listening? Perhaps they really can’t hear you!
Another cause of tinnitus is trauma to the head or neck. People who have been abused as children may have persistent ringing in their ears as a result of being hit upside the head. Whiplash is another type of head and neck injury that can cause tinnitus.
Another type of trauma that isn’t due to physical injury but can affect the functioning of the ear is a noncancerous tumor known as an acoustic neuroma. This benign growth is on the auditory nerve near the inner ear. Though it is not a common cause, it can result in ringing in the ear.
A more common cause of tinnitus is ear wax buildup. This is a condition that occurs in both kids and adults. Some people just tend to develop excess wax that is difficult to remove. Others get it as a result of using a cotton swab, a fingertip or other small object to clean your ears. As the saying goes, never put anything smaller than your elbow in your ear to avoid getting a wax buildup.
Medical conditions may lead to tinnitus. Conditions such as ear infections, high blood pressure, migraine headaches, and multiple sclerosis can be at the root of the problem. Some of these conditions can be corrected or controlled and that may give you relief from that incessant noise you have in your ears.
Finally, there are medications such as certain chemotherapy, water pills, some types of antibiotics or too much aspirin that can lead to cases of tinnitus. Fortunately for some, the condition clears when the medication is stopped.
If you're hearing sounds in your ears that no one else does, you're not going crazy. Contact an ear doctor for an examination because you may have tinnitus.