Is There A Cure For Tinnitus?
Unfortunately, there is no cure for tinnitus. This is partly because tinnitus is not an illness itself but a symptom of another problem.
It’s similar to pain in this respect. Every individual’s perception and experience of tinnitus is different too, which can make finding a treatment that works just for you more challenging. The goal of tinnitus treatment is to find relief from the symptoms.
How do you do that? There’s no one answer. Thankfully, there are several different treatment avenues that you can explore until you find something that helps you. Be patient — there’s often a bit of trial and error involved before you find the right option(s).
You may find many supposed cures for tinnitus on the web. Some work, some don’t work, and some are promising but need to be researched more thoroughly before we know for sure.
To help you judge between them, the British Tinnitus Association regularly reviews popular tinnitus treatments and guides you towards those that are both safe and effective. That can save you a lot of wasted money and dashed hopes.
So, what does work? It depends a bit on the most likely trigger or origin of your tinnitus.
6 Treatment Options For Tinnitus
There are treatment options that may reduce the severity of your tinnitus.
This is a fairly simple one! If your tinnitus is caused by a build-up of earwax that’s blocking your ear canal (or cerumen impaction) then removing the earwax should help.
All medicines have side-effects and, unfortunately, some drugs can cause or worsen tinnitus. If you’ve noticed a link between a certain medication and tinnitus, then talk to your doctor. It may be possible to reduce the dose or swap to a different medicine.
Age-related hearing loss is the most common cause of tinnitus. If you have hearing loss, then a hearing aid may improve your tinnitus as well as your hearing. Sometimes, the hearing aid is all you need and sometimes it’s one of several techniques used to manage your tinnitus.
If you need a hearing aid, then you’ll get the most benefit by wearing it throughout your waking hours. It can seem very odd at first but you will get used to the feel of the device and to the sensation of normal sounds. And your audiologist will follow up with you regularly to check that the device is working, fitting well and meeting your needs.
This can be of the most effective treatments for tinnitus. That may seem odd since it’s about your thought process rather than your hearing. And yet it has been shown to significantly reduce depression and improve quality of life for people living with tinnitus.
Cognitive behavioural therapy is a psychological treatment where a trained professional uses relaxation techniques to reduce your stress levels, challenges your thoughts about tinnitus and helps you get used to its presence so that it bothers you less. You’ll usually have several sessions with a psychologist.
More studies are needed on this before we can confidently say it works but many people find it helps, especially with acute tinnitus symptoms.
Sound therapy is the deliberate use of any sound that makes you less aware of your tinnitus or less bothered by it. Many people find tinnitus especially annoying in quiet environments so they might play background music while reading or listen to some nature sounds while falling asleep.
Most modern hearing aids also provide tinnitus sound therapy programs.
Living with any long-term condition can be hard, especially since it comes on top of all the usual stresses of life. Making a deliberate effort to relax can really help you manage your tinnitus in the long-run.
Deep breathing exercises slow your heart rate and help you calm down. You can do them anywhere since there’s no special equipment required. Or you can download a relaxation app or join a tai chi or yoga class.
Continue doing those things that bring you joy. It’ll help to squeeze tinnitus to the edges of your life rather than allowing it to take centre stage. This is your show, after all.