Do you have a ringing in your ears?
Do you hear a ringing, buzzing, thundering, humming, cracking, hissing, whistling or grinding in your ears, but there is no outside sound present? Do you notice that the noise is worse at night?The noise can vary from a low rumble to high pitched screech, and it can be constant, intermittent, pulsing or wax and wane.
It is a very common condition that most people will experience in their life, but for approximately 10-15% it can be a persistent issue and if extreme can affect the quality of the sufferer’s life.
What are the causes of Tinnitus?
The name Tinnitus (sometimes spelled as tinitus) originates from the latin word Tinnare, which means ringing. There are a number of different causes, which include:-
- Trauma – head injury and damage to the nerves supplying the ear.
- Exposure to excessive noise, such a music events, or the use of headphones, with the volume up very high or drilling.
- Medications – that are ototoxic – ie. Drug or chemical damage to the inner ear. Some antibiotics and anti-depressants can have this affect.
- Physiological – eg. Jaw dysfunction, from bruxism (grinding teeth), or dental work – the jaw joint has some nerves and ligaments in common with the middle ear.
- Cardiovascular disease – if there is a blood circulation disorder to the head such as atherosclerosis or high blood pressure, tinnitus can be present, the noise tends to be pulsating.
- Blockages due to earwax or changes in the bones of the ear.
- Stress – as stress gathers in the body, the digestive system is affected as well as increasing muscle tension, heart rate and blood pressure.
- Meniere’s disease – a disease of the inner ear caused by the build up of fluid in labyrinth (inner ear).
- Ear infections or ruptured ear drum.
- Drinking too much caffeine or alcohol.
How Osteopathy can help with tinnitus
Osteopathy aims to relieve muscular tension, improve blood flow, improve joint mobility of the neck and jaw, encourage lymphatic and sinus drainage, in the neck and head.
Techniques to Stimulate the parasympathetic nervous system (the rest and restore nervous system of the body) via the vagus nerve, helps to relieve symptoms of stress, encourages digestion, reduces blood pressure and heart rate.
Advice regarding an individual’s diet, caffeine intake, exercise, sleep, exposure to sunlight may be given in order to help to bring balance to the nervous system.
What else can you do to help relieve Tinnitus?
– Sound masking devices
– Avoiding alcohol and caffeine
– Stress reduction practices
- Exercise – such a yoga or Qi Gong
- Breathing exercises
- Mindfulness practices, such as meditation
– Improving posture to avoid strain or tension in the neck muscles and joints.
Tinnitus has various causes, so if you suffer from it, a medical examination is important to find the root cause, so that you can follow the best treatment protocol.
To make an appointment with one of our practitioners at City Osteopathy & Physiotherapy, please follow the link. Book Now