Tinnitus usually manifests as a ringing in the ears, though it can also sound like buzzing, whooshing, clicking, chirping, hissing, roaring, whistling, etc. It is very common and affects more than 44 million Americans. Unlike hearing loss, tinnitus is a symptom rather than a medical condition.
Tinnitus in Littleton patients can result from many different underlying causes, though its source can’t always be identified. Known causes of tinnitus include hearing loss, loud noise exposure, trauma, TMJ disorder, high blood pressure, ototoxic medications, acoustic neuroma, earwax buildup, stress, disease and migraines.
If you see a hearing loss expert in Littleton for tinnitus, the first step will be trying to identify the symptom’s source. In some cases, an audiologist is able to pinpoint the underlying cause and treat it, effectively eliminating the unwanted noise. Most patients’ tinnitus, however, can’t be treated or cured. In these cases, tinnitus counseling and therapy is the best method for coping with the unwanted noise.
Tinnitus Therapy Techniques
Nearly 20 million Americans suffer from tinnitus categorized as “mildly to significantly annoying.” Worse, more than 3.5 million report suffering from debilitating symptoms. In order to help patients like these cope with tinnitus in Littleton, Columbine Hearing Care’s hearing loss staff offers cutting-edge, effective tinnitus therapy options.
Tinnitus therapy combines counseling and distraction techniques to retrain the way the brain perceives the sounds of tinnitus. With hard work and a commitment to counseling, many patients can learn to ignore the noise. There are several treatment plans options designed to distract the brain from the ringing in your ears. Some popular techniques include:
- Noise suppression therapy using a white noise machine
- Tinnitus retraining therapy using a personalized low-level tonal pattern generator
- Amplification therapy using hearing aids to drown out the sound of tinnitus
- Drug therapy using certain antidepressants, minerals or herbal supplements
No matter which therapy technique your audiologist recommends for your tinnitus in Littleton, counseling is vital to success. Tinnitus counseling aims to:
- Educate patients about the causes and effects of tinnitus
- Teach patients about the methodology and efficacy of the tinnitus therapy technique they’re using
- Train patients on how to get the most from their tinnitus treatment
- Reduce patients’ emotional reaction to tinnitus by identifying and changing negative thought patterns and behaviors
- Alter the body’s reaction to stress using biofeedback relaxation techniques