Tinnitus (Ringing in the Ears) (cont.)

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Can tinnitus be prevented?

Repeated loud noise exposure can be a cause of tinnitus as well as hearing loss. Loud music may cause short term symptoms, but repeated occupational exposure (for example, musicians, factory and construction workers) requires less intense sound levels to cause potential hearing damage leading to tinnitus. Minimizing sound exposure, therefore, decreases the risk of developing tinnitus. Sound protection equipment, like ear muffs, may be appropriate at work and at home when exposed to lour noised.

A variety of medications may be ototoxic (damage the ear). If tinnitus develops while you are taking a medication, stop the medication and discuss other options with your health care professional.

What's being done in research on tinnitus treatments?

Tinnitus remains a symptom that affects the lives of millions of people. Research is directed not only at its treatment, but also at understanding why it occurs. Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation may hold some hope. Research has shown some short-term relief, but long-term benefit is yet unproven. Ongoing research funded in part by the American Tinnitus Association continues to explore the potential benefits of this therapy.

REFERENCES:

Lehner A. et al. rTMS for the Treatment for Chronic Tinnitus: Optimization by Stimulation of the Cortical Tinnitus Network. Tinnitus Today, Summer 2012.

Meng Z, et al. Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation for tinnitus. Cochrane Database Syst Rev 2011 Oct 5;(10).

Park J, White AR, Ernst E. Efficacy of acupuncture as a treatment for tinnitus: a systematic review. Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg 2000 Apr; 126 (4):489-92.
br />University of San Francisco Medical Center. Tinnitus Signs and Symptoms.


Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 12/9/2014

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