What does it mean to experience constant ringing in your ears? Also known as tinnitus, the constant or intermittent sound in your ear is usually harmless. Many individuals who experience tinnitus hear whistling, humming, buzzing, hissing, chirping, roaring, and sometimes even shrieking inside their head.
Causes of Ringing in the Ears
Tinnitus is common and has several causes. The most common cause of tinnitus is inner ear cell damage. With inner ear cell damage, the tiny, hair-like sensors for sound become damaged and send triggers to your brain that you’re hearing something when there’s no external noise.
Other common causes of tinnitus include:
- Hearing loss due to age
- Prolonged exposure to loud noises
- Earwax blockage
- Changes to the ear bone
Less common causes include:
- Meniere’s disease, an inner ear disorder
- Temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorders
- Head or neck injuries
- Acoustic neuroma, a benign tumor on the cranial nerve between the brain and inner ear
Rare causes of tinnitus include:
- Atherosclerosis, a disease of the arteries
- Head and neck tumors
- High blood pressure
- Turbulent blood flow
- Capillaries malformation
Even some medications can cause tinnitus, including:
- Cancer medication
- Diuretics, or water pills
- Quinine medication
- Some antidepressants
Aspirin, taken in high doses
Other Symptoms of Tinnitus
In addition to the constant or intermittent noise you hear inside your head, tinnitus can cause some other symptoms to develop, including:
- Ear pain
- Difficulty sleeping
- Difficulty concentrating
- Inability to hear as well
Treatment for Ear Ringing
Because of the many causes of tinnitus, it’s important to meet with a medical professional for an evaluation. The only way to treat the constant ringing in your ears is to treat the underlying cause first.
If you’re experiencing tinnitus and are unsure of what’s causing it, visit your nearest FastMed Urgent Care to get help today.
Harvard Health Publications: https://www.health.harvard.edu/diseases-and-conditions/tinnitus-ringing-in-the-ears-and-what-to-do-about-it
Mayo Clinic: https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/tinnitus/symptoms-causes/dxc-20180362
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