This week marks Tinnitus Awareness Week. Tinnitus affects around 6 million people in the UK and for some people it is severe enough to affect their quality of life. Tinnitus affects all age groups including children, but it is more common in people over 65.
Tinnitus is the sensation of a ‘ringing’ or ‘buzzing’ noise in the ears or head. It can be high-pitched and so loud that it affects concentration or the ability to hear other sounds.
Tinnitus is most commonly caused by age-related “wear-and-tear” of the inner ear (cochlea), but in some cases it can be a symptom of an underlying condition, for example, an ear infection, ear wax blockage or it can be caused by exposure to loud noise or certain medicines. The following underlying symptoms can also be related to tinnitus. By treating these symptoms, the tinnitus can be relieved.
- Lack of sleep
- Lack of concentration
- Memory loss
For people with severe tinnitus which is persistent, Tinnitus Therapy can be a very effective way to reduce the intensity of the noise. If necessary, an ENT Specialist can refer you to an Audiologist who specialises in Tinnitus Therapy. The two main aims of treatment are distraction and relaxation therapy. The ENT Clinic works closely with a number of local therapists who provide Tinnitus Therapy.
Recently, tinnitus has been identified as a symptom of Long Covid. As patients are recovering from acute COVID-19, one of the ear, nose and throat symptoms that patients are experiencing is tinnitus. This has been documented on the NICE website (National Institute for Health and Care Excellence). https://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/ng188/chapter/common-symptoms-of-ongoing-symptomatic-covid-19-and-post-covid-19-syndrome
The British Tinnitus Association works hard to provide information to the public about the symptoms and treatment of tinnitus. Their website has useful information about how to manage symptoms, how to access treatment, and guidance on how to live with tinnitus during the pandemic. It also offers information on local support groups, tinnitus research and how to get involved in the charity. Read more here: https://www.tinnitus.org.uk
If you are suffering with Tinnitus, help is out there. By seeing an ENT specialist, who can diagnose and treat the underlying cause, your tinnitus can be reduced. Call us to book an appointment with Mr Paul Kirkland, Consultant ENT Surgeon to discuss your symptoms and to agree a management plan. You can also find more information about tinnitus here: https://www.theentclinic.co.uk/conditions/ear-conditions/tinnitus/
Alternatively, contact us via our website: https://www.theentclinic.co.uk/make-an-appointment/ or call 07925 160834.
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