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Tinnitus (pronounced ti-ni-tis), or ringing in the ears, is the sensation of hearing ringing, buzzing, hissing, chirping, whistling, or other sounds.
Although tinnitus is often associated with hearing loss, it does not cause the loss, nor does a hearing loss cause tinnitus.
Some instances of tinnitus are caused by infections or blockages in the ear, and the tinnitus can disappear once the underlying cause is treated.
Tinnitus can worsen in some people if they drink alcohol, smoke cigarettes, drink caffeinated beverages, or eat certain foods.
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A study found that one in 10 people who take protective aspirin may not really qualify, because the risk of heart attacks and strokes wasn't great enough to justify the risk of unwanted bleeding associated with aspirin.
Constant noise in the head -- such as ringing in the ears -- rarely indicates a serious health problem, but it sure can be annoying.
Tinnitus (pronounced tih-NITE-us or TIN-ih-tus) is sound in the head with no external source.
While there's no cure for chronic tinnitus, it often becomes less noticeable and more manageable over time. Sound waves travel through the ear canal to the middle and inner ear, where hair cells in part of the cochlea help transform sound waves into electrical signals that then travel to the brain's auditory cortex via the auditory nerve. Tinnitus can arise anywhere along the auditory pathway, from the outer ear through the middle and inner ear to the brain's auditory cortex, where it's thought to be encoded (in a sense, imprinted). Most tinnitus is "sensorineural," meaning that it's due to hearing loss at the cochlea or cochlear nerve level.
Musculoskeletal factors — jaw clenching, tooth grinding, prior injury, or muscle tension in the neck — sometimes make tinnitus more noticeable, so your clinician may ask you to tighten muscles or move the jaw or neck in certain ways to see if the sound changes. Tinnitus that's continuous, steady, and high-pitched (the most common type) generally indicates a problem in the auditory system and requires hearing tests conducted by an audiologist. Your general health can affect the severity and impact of tinnitus, so this is also a good time to take stock of your diet, physical activity, sleep, and stress level — and take steps to improve them. If you're often exposed to loud noises at work or at home, it's important to reduce the risk of hearing loss (or further hearing loss) by using protectors such as earplugs or earmuff-like or custom-fitted devices.
In addition to treating associated problems (such as depression or insomnia), there are several strategies that can help make tinnitus less bothersome. There is no FDA-approved drug treatment for tinnitus, and controlled trials have not found any drug, supplement, or herb to be any more effective than a placebo.
The most effective approaches are behavioral strategies and sound-generating devices, often used in combination.
Not all insurance companies cover tinnitus treatments in the same way, so be sure to check your coverage.
Again, you have to remember when the sensation in the ear started and you refer to the appropriate period of time to get an interpretation of the ear incidence.
If there is ringing in your left ear, this means that your girlfriend or loved one is thinking of you. I am not sure what exactly this sensation is like as it is not described, and I wonder if those occasional itch in the ears are classified under this.
Its the radio bursts of the outer Planets and the Sun mainly, There are also rogue interstellar sources of these radio waves. Well…we don’t know how true the interpretations are but for me, I usually throw out the negative ones and get happy over the positive ones!
I had a rining in my left ear around 4 PM and I did indeed go on a journey (to the hospital) because of an ear infection. So, your sign of left ear ringing at 4pm turned out right, albeit it was for a ear infection.
These signs and omens are meant as a simple interpretation of why ringing in the ears happen, but they are not to be taken as totally true. To get the meaning of a sign or omen from ringing in the ears – the ringing happens only once or twice at most, and the time is noted for reference to the guide above.
The Brain: "Ringing in the Ears" Actually Goes Much Deeper Than ThatResearch on tinnitus has shown that it's rooted in the very way we process and understand sound. Today tinnitus continues to resist medicine’s best efforts, despite being one of the more common medical disorders. When Schlee compared people who suffer a lot of distress from tinnitus with those who are not much bothered by it, he found that the more distress people felt, the stronger the flow of signals out of the front and back of the brain and into the temporal cortex. Such complexity may explain why so many different tinnitus treatments work, but only modestly: Each attacks just one part of the tinnitus network.
The scientists cannot say for sure how the filtered music soothed their patients, but they speculate that the incoming signals encouraged the tone map to change its structure. Clearly the auditory cortex is just an early stop on the journey that sound takes from the outside world to our awareness. Steven Cheung and Paul Larson, two doctors at the University of California, San Francisco, set out to reproduce Lowry’s experience. Once signals travel from the ear to the auditory cortex, caudate, and putamen, they eventually make their way to regions of the brain that carry out more sophisticated sound information processing: connecting the sounds with memories, interpreting their meaning, giving them emotional significance. In fact, some people with tinnitus experience no difficulty hearing, and in a few cases they even become so acutely sensitive to sound (hyperacusis) that they must take steps to muffle or mask external noises. But ringing in the ears that does not get better or go away is an ear condition called tinnitus. For many, it's a ringing sound, while for others, it's whistling, buzzing, chirping, hissing, humming, roaring, or even shrieking.

You can help ease the symptoms by educating yourself about the condition — for example, understanding that it's not dangerous. When hair cells are damaged — by loud noise or ototoxic drugs, for example — the circuits in the brain don't receive the signals they're expecting. Things that cause hearing loss (and tinnitus) include loud noise, medications that damage the nerves in the ear (ototoxic drugs), impacted earwax, middle ear problems (such as infections and vascular tumors), and aging. One of the most common causes of tinnitus is damage to the hair cells in the cochlea (see "Auditory pathways and tinnitus").
She or he will take a medical history, give you a physical examination, and do a series of tests to try to find the source of the problem. Pulsatile tinnitus calls for a thorough evaluation by an otolaryngologist (commonly called an ear, nose, and throat specialist, or ENT) or neurotologist, especially if the noise is frequent or constant. You may also be able to reduce the impact of tinnitus by treating depression, anxiety, insomnia, and pain with medications or psychotherapy. CBT uses techniques such as cognitive restructuring and relaxation to change the way patients think about and respond to tinnitus.
Masking devices, worn like hearing aids, generate low-level white noise (a high-pitched hiss, for example) that can reduce the perception of tinnitus and sometimes also produce residual inhibition — less noticeable tinnitus for a short time after the masker is turned off. Other treatments that have been studied for tinnitus include transcutaneous electrical stimulation of parts of the inner ear by way of electrodes placed on the skin or acupuncture needles, and stimulation of the brain using a powerful magnetic field (a technique called repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation, or rTMS).
These were taken from the Tung Shu, The Ancient Chinese Almanac which dates back to thousands of years ago from China, when physical sensations in our body were interpreted for fortune telling!
Every time I had a ringing experience in my ear, I looked to this page and discovered simply what it meant! Ringing in the ear always occurs to me and burning sensations usually always occur with my mom. In Chinese Traditional Medicine, ringing in the ears is a sign of body heatiness and when we take cooling stuff to cool the body (balancing), the ringing should go away. Some were convinced it was caused by wind that got trapped inside the ear and swirled around endlessly, so they tried to liberate the wind by drilling a hole into the bones around the ear or using a silver tube to suck air out of the ear canal.
Surveys show that between 5 and 15 percent of people say they have heard some kind of phantom noise for six months or more; some 1 to 3 percent say tinnitus lowers their quality of life. The vibrations cause nerve hairs in the inner ear to shiver, and that triggers electric signals that travel along the auditory nerve into the brain. Things may start to go awry when toxic drugs, loud noises, or even whiplash cause damage to the nerve hairs in the ears. Neuroscientists, using increasingly sophisticated brain scans, are finding that changes ripple out across the entire brain.
This pattern suggests that the network Schlee discovered is important for the full experience of tinnitus. Christo Pantev of the University of Münster in Germany and his colleagues, for example, have brought some relief to people with tinnitus by rewiring their tone map. Some neurons in the auditory cortex extend branches down to the brain stem, where they link to a pair of regions called the caudate nucleus and putamen.
The experience left him with partial hearing loss and a high-pitched ringing in his ears that plagued him for 40 years. They took advantage of the fact that some people with Parkinson’s disease get electrodes surgically implanted in their brain stem to control their symptoms. It is precisely these regions that Schlee and his colleagues noted were behaving strangely in people with tinnitus. In such a case, other therapies -- both conventional and alternative -- may bring significant relief by either decreasing or covering up the unwanted sound. The noise causes permanent damage to the sound-sensitive cells of the cochlea, a spiral-shaped organ in the inner ear. Some medications (especially aspirin and other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs taken in high doses) can cause tinnitus that goes away when the drug is discontinued. In about 10% of cases, the condition interferes with everyday life so much that medical help and psychotherapy are needed.
This stimulates abnormal activity in the neurons, which results in the illusion of sound, or tinnitus. Tinnitus can also be a symptom of Mnire's disease, a disorder of the balance mechanism in the inner ear.
She or he will also ask you to describe the noise you're hearing (including its pitch and sound quality, and whether it's constant or periodic, steady or pulsatile) and the times and places in which you hear it. The aim is to habituate the auditory system to the tinnitus signals, making them less noticeable or less bothersome.
Today, the term TRT is being used to describe modified versions of this therapy, and the variations make accurate assessment of its effectiveness difficult.
A specialized device isn't always necessary for masking; often, playing music or having a radio, fan, or white-noise machine on in the background is enough. Tinnitus can force people to withdraw from their social life, make them depressed, and give them insomnia.
Some have people listen to certain sounds, others apply magnetic pulses to the brain and even implant electrodes in the brain stem.
They also signal back down the line, reaching out to neighboring neurons tuned to nearby frequencies, exciting some and muzzling others. Winfried Schlee of the University of Konstanz in Germany and his colleagues have been making some of the most detailed studies of tinnitus ever, using a method called magnetoencephalography (MEG, for short).
Tinnitus, in other words, extends beyond the ear, beyond a hearing-specialized part of the brain, beyond even any single piece of neural real estate. To do so, they edited recordings of music, filtering out the frequencies of the ringing in the ears of their patients, who then listened to the filtered music an average of 12 hours per week. Those regions may be important for processing the signals in several ways, such as categorizing sounds. Carpenters, pilots, rock musicians, street-repair workers, and landscapers are among those whose jobs put them at risk, as are people who work with chain saws, guns, or other loud devices or who repeatedly listen to loud music. The sound may keep time with your heartbeat, it may keep pace with your breathing, it may be constant, or it may come and go. Many people can hear their heartbeat — a phenomenon called pulsatile tinnitus — especially as they grow older, because blood flow tends to be more turbulent in arteries whose walls have stiffened with age.

If the auditory pathways or circuits in the brain don't receive the signals they're expecting from the cochlea, the brain in effect "turns up the gain" on those pathways in an effort to detect the signal — in much the same way that you turn up the volume on a car radio when you're trying to find a station's signal. The main components of TRT are individual counseling (to explain the auditory system, how tinnitus develops, and how TRT can help) and sound therapy. Although there's not enough evidence from randomized trials to draw any conclusions about the effectiveness of masking, hearing experts often recommend a trial of simple masking strategies (such as setting a radio at low volume between stations) before they turn to more expensive options. Electrodes attached to the skin feed information about physiological processes such as pulse, skin temperature, and muscle tension into a computer, which displays the output on a monitor. In two small trials, rTMS compared with a sham procedure helped improve the perception of tinnitus in a few patients.
She says that the burning usually means someone is talking about her, just like when you get hiccups, someone is remembering you. Each nerve hair is tuned to a particular frequency of sound and excites only certain neurons in the auditory cortex. These feedback controls allow us to sift through incoming sounds for the most important information, so that we are not overwhelmed by meaningless noise.
Bereft of incoming signals, the neurons undergo a peculiar transformation: They start to eavesdrop on their neighbors, firing in response to other frequencies. They take advantage of the fact that every time neurons send each other signals, their electric current creates a tiny magnetic field. Pantev and his collaborators found that their patients’ tinnitus significantly eased.
In 2004 Louis Lowry, an ear-nose-and-throat doctor at Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia, discovered that the caudate and the putamen play an important role in tinnitus by studying an unusual patient—himself. Schlee’s results suggest that the higher regions of the brain send their own feedback to the auditory cortex, amplifying its false signals.
The most common cause of tinnitus is hearing loss that occurs with aging, but it can also be caused by living or working around loud noises. As many as 50 to 60 million people in the United States suffer from this condition; it's especially common in people over age 55 and strongly associated with hearing loss. Pulsatile tinnitus may be more noticeable at night, when you're lying in bed, because more blood is reaching your head, and there are fewer external sounds to mask the tinnitus. The resulting electrical noise takes the form of tinnitus — a sound that is high-pitched if hearing loss is in the high-frequency range and low-pitched if it's in the low-frequency range. A 2010 review of six studies by the Cochrane Collaboration (an international group of health authorities who evaluate randomized trials) found that after CBT, the sound was no less loud, but it was significantly less bothersome, and patients' quality of life improved. A device is inserted in the ear to generate low-level noise and environmental sounds that match the pitch, volume, and quality of the patient's tinnitus. In a Cochrane review of the one randomized trial that followed Jastreboff's protocol and met the organization's standards, TRT was much more effective in reducing tinnitus severity and disability than a technique called masking (see below).
Patients learn how to alter these processes and reduce the body's stress response by changing their thoughts and feelings. Recent research suggests why: Tinnitus is a lot more complicated than just a ringing in the ears.
MEG allows scientists to detect such changing patterns of activity in the brain 100 times per second.Schlee and his colleagues find widespread differences in the brains of people with tinnitus and those without it. They also found that the neurons tuned to the tinnitus frequency in the auditory cortex became less active. The patients agreed to undergo several minutes of deep brain stimulation to these regions during surgery as the electrode was being implanted.
Many people worry that tinnitus is a sign that they are going deaf or have another serious medical problem, but it rarely is. This kind of tinnitus resembles phantom limb pain in an amputee — the brain is producing abnormal nerve signals to compensate for missing input. The neurons at one end of the auditory cortex are tuned to low frequencies; the farther you go toward the other end, the higher the tuning of the neurons. As the brain’s feedback controls get rewired, the neurons end up in a self-sustaining loop, producing a constant ringing.
A network of regions in the brains of people with tinnitus tend to fire their neurons in sync. Cheung and Larson reported that the tinnitus became much fainter in four of the five patients. Even in bad cases of tinnitus, people can become unaware of the phantom sound if they are distracted.
The Roman writer Pliny the Elder suggested that earthworms boiled in goose grease be put in the ear.
If a rat is trained to recognize sounds at a particular frequency, the corresponding region of the tone map will get bigger. That is why tinnitus often doesn’t go away when people get their auditory nerve surgically cut. Schlee has determined that his tinnitus-stricken subjects have a more synchronized pattern of signals coming out of regions in the front and the back of the brain. It may be that distractions deprive the errant signals from the auditory cortex of the attention they need to cause real distress. What’s more, some of the most effective treatments for tinnitus appear to work by altering the behavior of the front of the brain. Hearing loss treatments depend on the cause and include hearing aids, sound-amplifying devices, and antibiotics if the cause is an infection. Counseling, for example, can make people better aware of the sounds they experience by explaining the brain process that may underlie the disorder, so they can consciously reduce their distress. There are a variety of causes of hearing loss besides congenital hearing loss, including ear infections, genetic disorders, illnesses that trigger hearing loss, head injuries, medications, and more.

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Comments to “Ringing in the ears meaning”

  1. LadyWolf:
    Tactics are used by doctors have reported improvements both ears, not just the one that rings.
    Then the headache is worse ideas as to how I can improve Tinnitus day the ringing in your ears.
  3. Dedmopo3:
    Effectiveness of masking, hearing experts often recommend a trial of simple masking.
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