Going to concerts, sporting events, and other loud gatherings are distant memories. Although you might miss the camaraderie and connection, you probably don’t miss the abuse on your ears.
You know, the ringing that makes it hard to fall asleep for the next day or two. But while the cause of ear ringing, or muted sounds, is sometimes identifiable, other times it is not.
Tinnitus is the term used to describe the perception of sound without an external stimulus. It can be short-lived and the symptom of an acute cause or it may be symptomatic of something more severe. It can be mild and intermittent or debilitating and lasting.
Ringing is also not the only sound tinnitus can hit you with. Other potential sounds include:
- Chirping crickets
The American Tinnitus Association (ATA) suggests that more than 50 million Americans experience it in some form, while about 20 million experience it regularly. And according to experts, it could be a symptom of 200 potential disorders.
Identifying the cause of your tinnitus, and treating it, is reliant on discovering its source and treating the underlying condition. It might not always eliminate the sounds, but it could help manage them.
One cause of tinnitus is out of control blood sugar. When you have diabetes and glucose metabolism is impaired, tinnitus may indicate glucose is not being adequately supplied to the ear (among other places). In this case, treating diabetes and blood sugar is the plan.
Tinnitus can also occur if you are regularly exposed to noise, are congested, have plugged ears, or are on certain medications. Generally, these causes are relatively easy to treat. Others, like inner ear disease or permanent hearing damage, may require further intervention.
To protect your ears, the best strategies are to listen to music and television at a moderate level. Use earplugs in noisy atmospheres (when you’re allowed back to them) or operating loud equipment and do your best to eat a nutrient-dense diet, rich in antioxidants.