Tinnitus Management in St Louis

Treatment for ringing in the ears

Tinnitus (also known as ‘ringing in the ears’) is the frequent experience of bothersome sounds inside the head. The condition is very common, effecting 44 million Americans and is the most common injury for our armed service men and women. Others cannot hear the sounds that are described as ringing, buzzing, or chirping but for individuals with tinnitus, the sounds are very real and perceived as a threat to their well-being. For these people, it interferes with their daily work and even with their sleep. Often associated with tinnitus, but also can be experienced alone, hyperacusis can be equally disruptive. Hyperacusis is the condition in which ordinary sounds seem uncomfortably loud or painful. In both tinnitus or hyperacusis, the causes can vary which emphasizes the need for a thorough evaluation by an audiologist.

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Tinnitus & Hearing Loss

Recent studies indicate that 80% of cases of tinnitus also include some degree of hearing loss. Often just addressing the underlying hearing loss can alleviate the ringing in the ears. Sound masking and sound therapy is known to provide relief. Many of today’s best hearing aids have sound masking features programmed in to the device.

Our tinnitus treatment is highly personal and customized. We carefully evaluate the auditory system and medical history to determine whether or not medical intervention is warranted. We evaluate the effects of tinnitus and/or hyperacusis on your quality of life. We inform and provide recommendations to make tinnitus and/or hyperacusis less bothersome. We will work with you to determine the optimal treatment.

What causes ringing ears?

In cases where tinnitus is linked with hearing loss, hearing specialists identify damage to the hair cells of the inner ear as a potential cause. Exposure to loud noises over extended periods of time, or short traumatic noise events such as explosions or gunfire as in combat zones, are also causes for permanent damage to inner ear cells, which may lead to tinnitus. Inner ear hair cells do not regenerate, and when damaged, may send phantom signals to the brain to be registered as sound.

Problems with bones of the ear may lead to tinnitus, as well as earwax blockage in the ear canal. Scientists have identified that certain aminoglycoside antibiotic drugs also case damage to hair cells of the inner ear, which may also lead to tinnitus. Other causes include problems with the cardiovascular system, such as high blood pressure, causing the veins of the head and neck area around the ear to constrict blood flow.

Types of Tinnitus Explained

There are two types of tinnitus: subjective and objective. Both of these types may be temporary or chronic. Depending on the type, your audiologist may be able to identify the underlying cause.

Subjective tinnitus is heard only by the person who experiences it. Subjective tinnitus is often linked to medication, impacted earwax, ear malfunctions and disease, or hearing loss. Exposure to loud noises, in single or repeated events, may also cause subjective tinnitus.

Objective tinnitus is heard by both the person who experiences it as well as someone sitting in close proximity. Objective tinnitus is most commonly caused by problems with the body’s somatic system, due to problems with blood flow. Pulsatile tinnitus is a case in which the noises are in sync with the heartbeat.

Is there a cure for ringing ears?

There is no singular cure but there are ways to cope with their tinnitus or reduce the symptoms. With temporary cases, tinnitus may cut in and out without warning. In chronic cases, people may experience ringing, buzzing or hissing consistently day in and day out. Depending on the cause of tinnitus, a change in medication, lifestyle, or diet may help to reduce or eliminate the symptoms. Removing impacted earwax may also help, if that is the cause.

In cases where tinnitus is linked with hearing loss, treating hearing loss with hearing aids equipped with tinnitus therapy may help to reduce or mask the symptoms. There are hearing devices that offer specific therapy for tinnitus, in the form of soothing sounds.

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Greentree Audiology is rated 4.9 out of 5 based on 267 reviews from around the Web.
2019-03-18
     
Very nice and professional people to talk to regarding my hearing situation. I highly recommend this office to see what they can do for you!!
2019-03-11
     
The Greentree Audiology and consultation office appeared to be professionally equipped and orderly. The technical clinician gave me good service and recommendation for the condition of my hearing aid. He described his knowledge in the field convincingly in a way that squared with the referral I was given for this office.
2019-03-09
     
I recommend Greentree Audiology to my family and friends whenever the subject of hearing loss comes up. You just won't find a better group of caring professionals to trust your hearing to. Plus they make sure you are never overcharged like companies that spend big bucks on advertising. I am thrilled that we found Dr Pickett for my mother's care. I am also extremely pleased with my first year of wearing hearing aids. Be sure to say hi to Trish at the front desk. She is a sweetheart and always takes good care of everyone.
2019-03-09
     
You just won't find a better group of caring professionals to trust your hearing to. Both my mother and myself see Dr Russ Pickett.
Sharon H.
2019-03-08
     
Great service. Russ Pickett speaks in plain English and explains the entire process.
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