When you first hear that ringing in your ears you might have a very typical reaction: pretend that it’s no big deal. You go through your day the same way you always do: you do your grocery shopping, you cook dinner, you try to have a discussion with your friends. While at the same time you try your hardest to ignore that ringing. Because there is one thing you feel sure about: your tinnitus will go away on its own.
You begin to worry, however, when after a few days the buzzing and ringing is unrelenting.
You’re not the only person to ever find yourself in this scenario. At times tinnitus stop by itself, and at other times it will stick around and that’s why it’s a challenging little disorder.
The Condition of Temporary Tinnitus
Around the world, almost everybody has had a bout of tinnitus because it’s extremely common. Tinnitus is a non-permanent condition, in most circumstances, and will ultimately recede by itself. The most prevalent scenario is the rock concert: you go to your local stadium to see your favorite band and you notice, when you get home, that your ears are ringing.
Within a couple of days the kind of tinnitus associated with damage from loud noise will usually fade away (and you chalk it up to the cost of seeing your favorite band on stage).
Of course, it’s exactly this kind of noise damage that, over time, can cause loss of hearing to move from temporary (or acute, as they say) to chronic. One concert too many and you might be waiting a long, long time for your tinnitus to go away on its own.
sometimes, Tinnitus Doesn’t Simply go Away
If your tinnitus lingers for over three months it’s then classified as chronic tinnitus (but you should have it examined by an expert long before that).
Something like 5-15% of individuals globally have recorded indications of chronic tinnitus. The precise causes of tinnitus are still not very well understood though there are some known connections (like hearing loss).
When the causes of your tinnitus aren’t obvious, it usually means that a fast “cure” will be elusive. If your ears have been buzzing for over three months and there’s no discernible cause, there’s a strong chance that the sound will not recede on its own. In those cases, there are treatment possibilities available (such as cognitive behavioral therapy or noise-canceling devices) that can help you deal with symptoms and preserve your quality of life.
It’s Important to Know What The Cause of Your Tinnitus is
It becomes a lot easier to mitigate the symptoms of tinnitus when you can determine the root causes. If a bacterial ear infection is, for example, the cause of your tinnitus, you can revive a healthy ear and clear hearing by managing it with antibiotics.
Some causes of acute tinnitus might consist of:
- Meniere’s disease (this is often associated with chronic tinnitus, as Meniere’s has no cure)
- Hearing loss (again, this is often associated with chronic tinnitus)
- Damage to the eardrum (such as a perforated eardrum)
- Chronic ear infections
- A blockage in the ear or ear canal
The Big Question…Will my Tinnitus Ever go Away?
The truth is that in most cases, yes, your tinnitus will subside on its own. But it becomes progressively more likely that you’re dealing with chronic tinnitus the longer these noises linger.
You believe that if you simply ignore it should go away on its own. But there may come a point where your tinnitus begins to become distressing, where it’s difficult to focus because the sound is too disruptive. In those circumstances, crossing your fingers may not be the extensive treatment plan you require.
The majority of the time tinnitus is just the body’s reaction to loud noise that could be damaging over time and will subside by itself. Whether that’s chronic or acute tinnitus, well, we’ll only know over time.