You might have a common reaction when you first hear that ringing in your ears: pretend that it’s no big deal. You set about your normal habits: you do your grocery shopping, you make dinner, you attempt to have a discussion with your partner. While at the same time you try your best to ignore that ringing. Because there is one thing you feel sure of: your tinnitus will go away by itself.
You begin to worry, however, when after a couple of days the ringing and buzzing is unrelenting.
This scenario happens to others as well. sometimes tinnitus stop on its own, and other times it will linger on and that’s why it’s a challenging little condition.
When Tinnitus is Likely to Go Away on Its Own
Tinnitus is incredibly common around the world, almost everyone’s had a bout every now and then. Tinnitus is a non-permanent condition, in most situations, and will ultimately subside on its own. The most prevalent example is the rock concert: you go see Bruce Springsteen at your local arena (it’s a good show) and when you go home, you notice that your ears are ringing.
The type of tinnitus that is linked to temporary injury from loud noise will often decrease within a few days (and you chalk it up to the price of seeing your favorite band play live).
Naturally, it’s precisely this kind of noise injury that, over time, can cause loss of hearing to move from temporary (or acute, as they say) to chronic. Too many of those types of concerts and you may end up with permanent tinnitus.
Often Times, Tinnitus Doesn’t Simply Disappear
If your tinnitus persists for over three months it’s then referred to as chronic tinnitus (but you should get it examined by a specialist long before that).
Something like 5-15% of people globally have documented signs of chronic tinnitus. While there are some recognized close associations (like loss of hearing, for instance), the causes of tinnitus aren’t yet really understood.
When the triggers of your tinnitus aren’t obvious, it often means that a fast “cure” will be unidentifiable. If your ears have been buzzing for more than three months and there’s no identifiable cause, there’s a strong possibility that the sound will not recede on its own. In those instances, there are treatment options available (like cognitive behavioral therapy or noise-canceling devices) that can help you control symptoms and maintain your quality of life.
It’s Significant to Know What The Cause of Your Tinnitus is
When you can determine the root cause of your tinnitus, dealing with the condition quickly becomes much easier. If a bacterial ear infection is, for instance, the cause of your tinnitus, you can revive a healthy ear and clear hearing by managing it with antibiotics.
Some causes of acute tinnitus may include:
- Eardrum damage (such as a perforated eardrum)
- Meniere’s disease (this usually has no cure and is often associated with chronic tinnitus)
- Chronic ear infections
- Hearing loss (again, this is often associated with chronic tinnitus)
- 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 experiencing chronic tinnitus the longer these tinnitus sounds last.
You can convince yourself that everything is fine and hope that the noises will simply go away. But there could come a point where your tinnitus begins to become irritating, where it’s tough to concentrate because the sound is too distracting. In those situations, wishful thinking may not be the comprehensive treatment plan you need.
In most instances, however, in fact, throughout most of your life, your tinnitus will usually subside on its own, a typical response to a loud environment (and your body’s way of telling you to avoid that environment from now on). Whether that’s chronic or acute tinnitus, well, we’ll only know over time.