How Do Hearing Aids Help Tinnitus (Ringing in Ears)?Published On
Studies have been able to determine that around 10 million people suffer from tinnitus. In other words, it can be said around one out of every six people has tinnitus or ringing in the ears.
And this is just an average number we are talking about. There are some countries where the numbers are even more alarming.
There are cases where tinnitus might go away on its own. However, if the ringing and buzzing get too intense, then undergoing effective treatment is a must.
Fortunately, there are fantastic treatments available for this condition. One of the best-known treatments for this condition is to get hearing aids.
In this article, we'll take a look at the ins and outs of how hearing aids can help with tinnitus. We will also look at what type of hearing devices are the best option for such cases.
How Do Hearing Aids Help with Tinnitus?
According to a study, it has been found that hearing aids can give relief to 60% of the patients who suffer from tinnitus. Out of that group, 22% of the patients get significant relief. However, hearing devices were not designed to treat patients with tinnitus, and the benefits tend to come through association.
Here are some of the tinnitus symptoms that can be reduced with hearing aids:
- Your hearing gets a little louder: The sounds around you are quieter, and the ringing sound of noises appear to have taken over your hearing abilities.
There's a point when the buzzing and ringing noises are the only things that you can hear. This is where your hearing devices will come in handy.
Hearing aids can reduce the buzzing and ringing sounds and also enhance the sounds from the outside environment. This will help you to hear and facilitate the buzzing sound issues.
- Easier to get engaged in better conversations: Getting your speech amplified is something that today's hearing devices can do quite well.
It simply means that your conversations will become easier once you start using these devices regularly.
You'll be able to connect better with your co-workers, friends, and family in social settings. This will eventually make you more social, and you will also be able to divert your mind from the "buzzing sounds" of tinnitus.
The more socially connected you are, the less stressed you will be. So, you can rest assured that your tinnitus will not be triggered by stress.
- Enhanced audio will stimulate your brain to stay fit: When you have the hearing loss associated with tinnitus, there are parts of your brain that are affected by fatigue, stress, and atrophy. It's all due to the lack of sounds reaching your brain.
So, when you put on your hearing devices, the sounds can reach the brain parts absent from exposure to sounds.
This will help you keep your brain more active and flexible, which can reduce some of the tinnitus symptoms that you face!
Today's Hearing Devices Have Several Advantages
As technology advanced, hearing devices got more intelligent. That's because, in many modern hearing devices, there are hearing assistance algorithms.
In simple words, it means that these devices can adjust the sounds according to the background noises. So, having a personalized hearing device means these devices can automatically adjust the sounds according to the hearing levels of the user.
Therefore, the better and advanced your hearing devices will be, the more they'll help mask tinnitus's humming and buzz noises.
Types of Hearing Aids for Tinnitus
There are three types of hearing aids for tinnitus relief:
- BTE (Behind-the-ear) hearing aids
- ITE (In-the-ear) hearing aids
- In-the-canal (ITC) hearing aids
Behind-The-Ear (BTE) Hearing Aids
These were the first kind of hearing devices that were launched in the market. These devices reside behind the ear, and the attached tubing reaches down to the ear canal.
Moreover, these kinds of noise cancelling hearing aids for tinnitus are an ideal choice as long as you have no issues with the device being visible.
BTE hearing aids come in various colors so that you can easily match them with your skin or hair color.
In-The-Ear (ITE) Hearing Aids
Just as the name suggests, these kinds of hearing devices are placed right inside the ear canal and are usually custom-fit. ITE-styled hearing devices are pretty new compared to the BTE hearing aids.
In-the-ear hearing devices are very advanced and can also be an excellent choice for aiding tinnitus.
And the best part about this style of hearing device is that you don't have to worry about your device being visible to the public, as this will stay right inside the ear.
In-The-Canal (ITC) Hearing Aids
ITC devices can also be used to aid your tinnitus issues. These devices are designed to sit comfortably on the outer ear bowl, making them accessible and compatible for use.
Although it might be partially visible on your ears, it can provide you with a considerable amount of hearing range that will reduce the ringing noises in your ears.
It also comes with an advanced directional microphone that's better for your understanding, especially in a noisy and crowded environment!
Tinnitus can indeed be a severe problem for many patients. Moreover, the continuous ringing sounds can also be very distracting.
So, in this case, hearing aids can come very handy, as they can get rid of the buzzing and humming noises. This can provide a lot of relief to the user.
Although tinnitus can recover with time, you must consult with an expert audiologist to diagnose early and proper treatment can be started.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Q: Will the VA give hearing aids for tinnitus?
Ans: Yes, Military veterans can receive hearing disability compensation like hearing aids for tinnitus by filing a VA disability claim. And you have to get at least a 10% disability rating for tinnitus.
Wang H, Tang D, Wu Y, Zhou L, Sun S.
Ther Adv Chronic Dis. 2020 Sep 14;11:2040622320956426. doi: 10.1177/2040622320956426. eCollection 2020.
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