why do we hear ringing in ears
Why are your ears ringing? Your ears are telling you something when they re ringing, says Sean Kinden, a clinical audiologist in Gander, Newfoundland. It s their way of letting us know that something is not working quite the way it should be. Over 360,000 Canadians have ringing ears, a condition known as tinnitus.
It can affect adults young or old, it can be constant or intermittent, it can be extremely bothersome or a light background noise. And tinnitus can have many causes. But you shouldn t go more than two weeks without getting it checked out by a doctor, says Kinden.
Here s what your ears may be trying to tell you.
What if my ringing ears can t be cured? When damage to the ear is permanent, your tinnitus may be there for the long haul. But there are ways to manage it. A tiny device, worn in the ear like a hearing aid, can broadcast white noise to mask the ringing.
The down side? It s not always long-lasting. Another approach, called tinnitus-retraining therapy, teaches you to tune out the sound instead of trying to mask it. A device is programmed to play a sound you enjoy like ocean waves or instrumental music at the exact same frequency as the ringing.
Eventually, you learn to desensitize yourself to the tinnitus sounds. It takes hours and hours of training in a clinic, but it works! says Kinden.
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