Coping with Tinnitus
Tinnitus, or the perception of unwanted sounds when none are present, affects as many as 50 million Americans. Those coping with tinnitus symptoms have had to face the unfortunate reality that there is no known cure for the condition.
For those with severe or disabling symptoms, this can be a heavy burden to carry. Fortunately, the medical community’s understanding of tinnitus is increasing at a fast pace, which has led to the development of promising tinnitus treatments.
Tinnitus and Hearing Loss
When discussing tinnitus, it is important to note that tinnitus is generally not an isolated disorder, meaning it often occurs as a symptom of another condition.
As many as 90 percent of tinnitus suffers also have some degree of hearing loss.
Other common contributing factors include ototoxic medications, poor circulation and issues with the head and neck.
It is therefore unlikely that a tinnitus cure will work uniformly. Instead, multiple treatments will need required to treat the full range of tinnitus symptoms.
Promising Tinnitus Research
One promising development in tinnitus research is drug therapy. Biomedical research funded by Action on Hearing Loss is already being tested in clinical trials. Experts are hopeful that this may lead to a marketable drug treatment by the year 2020.
A separate study has shown electromagnetic treatments to be a viable method for treating tinnitus. Originally developed as a treatment for Parkinson’s Disease, magnetic and current stimulation was also shown to reduce tinnitus symptoms. The American Tinnitus Association (ATA) is exploring both non-invasive and surgical stimulation methods.
Light therapy has been used for quite a while to treat a variety of conditions, such as depression, acne and psoriasis. Recently, more and more professionals are using it as a treatment for tinnitus. There are two kinds of light therapy: low level laser therapy (LLLT) and colored light therapy (CLT).
Low level laser therapy uses laser energy to help repair damaged tissue and rejuvenate cells so they return to their healthy state. The laser light is able to stimulate the mitochondria inside your cells to produce energy.
Instead of treating the underlying cause of tinnitus, colored light therapy is used to treat the symptoms. Staring at specifically tailored colors, usually blue, red and green, has been proven to help patients find relief from their symptoms.
While these potential cures are still in the development phase, there are a number of existing tinnitus therapies that have proven successful, such as sound and behavioral therapies. These methods provide relief by teaching the brain to ignore chronic tinnitus sounds. To find a provider of tinnitus therapy in Houston, Texas, contact our team today at 832-495-4277.