Ringing in the Ears: Symptom of Health Problems
Practically everyone has experienced ringing in their ears at some time or another, even if it’s been only briefly. For most people this goes away almost as quickly as it came sometimes lasting only just a few minutes. But there are a group of other people who have a constant ringing in their ears that almost never goes away. This is a condition known as tinnitus.
However ringing in the ears can be a symptom of a number of different complaints.
The first of those is as a symptom of allergies or sinus problems. However it is not the allergies or sinus problems that cause the ringing in the ears. Quite often it’s the medications used – such as as antibiotics or antihistamines to treat allergies and sinus conditions that caused the problem.
That’s because medications like antibiotics and antihistamines can lead to a thickening of the mucus in the ear making it difficult for the body to drain the fluid which can lead to a buildup of pressure within the ear, ear infections, and ringing in the ears. Other conditions such as presbycusis which is an age-related hearing loss, muscle tension, temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ), thyroid disorder and vitamins B12 deficiencies can all produce tinnitus like symptoms with ringing in the ear.
Ringing in the ear can also be a symptom of anxiety. This is because people who suffer anxiety or have panic attacks can experience a whole multitude of symptoms. However it should be said that just because you have ringing in the ears doesn’t mean that you do have an anxiety disorder.
Blood pressure is another thing that can cause ringing in the ears and apparently, this can also be indicative of high rates of cholesterol. According to some researchers this is because cholesterol gathers in the blood vessels near the ear and the flow of blood becomes more turbulent in its effort to force its way around the cholesterol deposits.
If that’s the case and you’re hearing ringing or more specifically a swishing sound then it might be a good idea to have your cholesterol levels checked.
However the most common cause of ringing in the ears is tinnitus and it comes in several different forms.
The rarest form of tinnitus is atherosclerosis. Unlike most other forms of tinnitus – in which only the sufferer can hear the noise in their ears – with atherosclerosis it can also be audible from outside. This is because it has a well understood physical cause in that a problem has developed in the very structure of the ear itself. So, placing something like a stethoscope either over the ear or on the neck, a doctor can hear the noise as well.
Most typically the noise generated with atherosclerosis is more like a pulsing or rushing sound caused by the passage of blood as it pulses through and around the ear.
The most common types of tinnitus will cause a noise that only the individual sufferer can hear. Noises can range from a ringing sound through to a buzzing, a whining, a popping and for some people – something like the sound of radio static.
Also, some people will be affected in just one year whereas others will be affected in both ears.
The biggest problem with tinnitus is that it is hard to find an effective treatment. Because of this, some people have turned to more natural treatments for tinnitus using things like homoeopathic remadies, acupuncture, hypnosis and even implants.