Tinnitus – Risk factors and prevention tips
One in 22 people in the U.S. have tinnitus, research says. Tinnitus is a condition that causes ringing to the ears. Some people may experience the ringing sensations for a short period of time while others struggle with the condition for a lengthy period of time. There are some things people can do to prevent the condition from occurring.
What causes tinnitus?
Tinnitus can originate in several portions of the ear. The outer, middle, and inner ear can be the origin of the condition. In some cases, the condition originates in the brain. The inability for the brain to properly process audio stimuli can lead to tinnitus. The brain sometimes compensates for its inability to pick up certain sounds by producing the ringing sensation.
Understanding the risks of tinnitus
Individuals who work in loud, industrial settings may be exposed to heightened noise levels. People who work with loud machinery or in factory settings are more at risk of developing hearing loss. Individuals who listen to loud music in their headphones for extended periods of time are also at risk for developing tinnitus and experiencing hearing loss. Gun enthusiasts who practice in gun ranges without the proper hearing protection may develop the hearing condition.
Tinnitus prevention tips
Stay healthy. A healthy lifestyle can reduce the risks of this hearing problem. A healthy diet combined with an exercise routine can preserve hearing health in cases where the tinnitus was tied to a circulatory problem. Reducing caffeine and alcohol intake is also recommended. Quitting smoking and lowering sodium intake can improve blood flow to the ears. Other tinnitus risk factors include high blood pressure and hypertension.
Wear protective gear. This is really important for people who work in certain occupations where loud noise is prevalent. People who operate heavy machinery or work in loud environments should wear protective gear to preserve hearing health.
Lower the volume in headsets. Being conscientious about how loud the music is being played while wearing headsets can reduce risks for developing tinnitus. Limiting the amount of time the headsets are worn is another step a person can take to protect their hearing.
It may be ideal for the person seeks medical treatment for their tinnitus condition. In fact, research shows that 12 million Americans have a severe case of tinnitus that may require formal medical attention. A hearing test may need to be administered in order to get to the bottom of the condition. This especially important if the problem continues for a prolonged period of time. If there is a severe underlying health problem causing the condition, early medical intervention may be necessary to limit further damage to the hearing. As one ages, it may necessary to have the hearing periodically tested.