Around one in seven people are estimated to deal with tinnitus. That puts the overall number in the millions. That’s… a lot of people, both in actual terms and relative to the general population, and in some countries, the percentage of the population who experience tinnitus is even more startling.
True, tinnitus isn’t always chronic. But in those cases where ringing, buzzing, or humming in your ears is tough to get rid of, finding an effective remedy can very quickly become a priority. Fortunately, there is a treatment that has proven to be really effective: hearing aids.
Hearing loss and tinnitus are connected but separate conditions. you can have hearing loss without tinnitus or tinnitus without hearing loss. But if you are going through the two conditions together, which is relatively typical, hearing aids can treat both at the same time.
How Hearing Aids Can Help Tinnitus
Hearing aids have, according to one study, been documented to give tinnitus relief to up to 60% of participants. For 22% of those people, the relief was significant. In spite of this, hearing aids are actually made to manage hearing loss not specifically tinnitus. The benefits appear to come by association. So if you have tinnitus and hearing loss then that’s when your hearing aids will most effectively treat the tinnitus symptoms.
Here’s how hearing aids can help get rid of tinnitus symptoms:
- Outside sounds are enhanced: When you experience hearing loss, the volume of the world (or, at least, particular wavelengths of the world) can fade away and become quieter. When that occurs the ringing in your ears becomes a lot more obvious. It’s the loudest thing you hear because it is not decreased by your hearing loss. A hearing aid can boost that surrounding sound, helping to mask the buzzing or ringing that was so prominent before. As you pay less and less attention to your tinnitus, it becomes less of a problem.
- It becomes less difficult to engage in conversations: Amplifying human speech is something modern hearing aids are particularly good at. So once you’re using your hearing aids regularly, carrying on conversations gets much easier. You can keep up with the story Fred is telling at the restaurant or listen to what Nancy is excited about at work. The more you socialize with other people, the more social you are, the less you’ll detect your tinnitus. Interacting socially also helps reduce stress, which is linked to tinnitus.
- The enhanced audio stimulation is keeping your brain fit: When you have hearing loss, those portions of your brain charged with interpreting sounds can frequently suffer from stress, fatigue, or atrophy. Tinnitus symptoms you might be experiencing can be decreased when the brain is in a healthy limber condition and hearing aids can help maintain this.
The Benefits of Modern Hearing Aids
Smart Technology is incorporated into modern hearing aids. They come with cutting edge hearing assistance algorithms and the newest technology. But the effectiveness of modern hearing aids is accomplished in part because each device can be customized and calibrated on a patient-per-patient basis (they can even detect the level of background noise and automatically adjust accordingly).
Whatever your particular hearing levels are, customized hearing aids can conveniently be calibrated to them. The humming or buzzing is more likely to be successfully obscured if your hearing aid is dialed in to work best for you.
The Best Way to Get Rid of Tinnitus
Your degree of hearing loss will dictate what’s right for you. There are still treatment options for your tinnitus even if you don’t have any hearing loss. Cognitive behavioral therapy, a custom masking device, or medication are some possible solutions.
But, if you’re one of the many people out there who happen to have both hearing loss and tinnitus, a pair of hearing aids may be able to do the old two-birds-one-stone thing. Managing your hearing impairment with a good pair of hearing aids can often stop tinnitus from making your life difficult.