Tinnitus is a chronic condition that causes persistent ear ringing, ear fullness, and dizziness. There are many different factors that may cause tinnitus, some of which may indicate an underlying health problem needing immediate medical attention. To find out what’s causing your tinnitus, have yourself tested for the following illnesses and medical conditions.
There’s no one cure for tinnitus, but there are many causes. Most often, tinnitus symptoms- ringing, buzzing, or whooshing sounds in the ears- result from neurological damage to the nerve cells of the inner ear’s cochlea.
What’s causing your tinnitus?
Ototoxic medications, exposure to loud noises, and old age are some of the most common causes of tinnitus, but many other factors involving chronic illness, nutritional deficiencies, or life-threatening conditions linked with heart attack and stroke must be fully investigated whenever ear ringing or pounding noises in the head become constant.
1- Vitamin deficiency
In many cases, frequent ear ringing from tinnitus can be attributed to a vitamin deficiency. B vitamins, such as vitamin B12, are important for neurological integrity. When vitamin levels are low, you may experience a breakdown in nerve cell functioning, resulting in symptoms of neuropathy, nerve damage.
Besides tinnitus, other telltale signs of vitamin deficiency include fatigue, memory loss, headaches, painful numbness and tingling, and muscle spasms.
2- High blood pressure
Tinnitus can also be an indicator of hypertension; in addition to vitamin B supplementation, other important nutritional strategies you should use to find out what’s causing tinnitus include cutting out sodium, increasing your intake of water, and taking beneficial vitamins, minerals, and herbs that promote normal circulation and allover vascular health.
Tinnitus can sometimes be a warning sign of atherosclerosis, a heart condition in which an artery wall thickens and accumulates plaque, a sticky substance made up of fat, cholesterol, calcium, and other materials. Atherosclerosis is a frequent cause of heart attacks and strokes.
4- Arteriovenous malformation (AVM)
Pulsatile tinnitus may be caused by an arteriovenous malformation (AVM), an abnormal connection or block between the arteries and veins. Symptoms of pulsatile tinnitus are whooshing or pounding sounds in the ears and head that “pulse” in time with your heartbeat. It is one of the very few types of tinnitus that doctors are able to observe objectively.
5- Head injury
If you’ve had a fall, or been in an accident, and you start to notice persistent ear ringing, then have your doctor examine you for signs of a head injury. Concussions, broken jaw bones, or a burst blood vessel can be causing your tinnitus.
6- Meniere’s disease
Meniere’s disease is an inner ear disorder that can impair hearing and balance, causing dizziness, disorientation, hearing loss, and often, tinnitus.
7- Temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder
The temporomandibular joint is a hinge that connects your upper and lower jaws, allowing for smooth and even movement. Tinnitus, in addition to bruxism, (involuntary teeth grinding) may occur when there is a deformity or other sort of imbalance in the temporomandibular joint area. Signs of TMJ disorder are persistent jaw pain, tinnitus ear ringing, sores on the insides of the cheeks, and headaches.
8- Brain tumor
Rarely, chronic tinnitus may be an early warning sign of a brain tumor, or cancer in other parts of the head or neck. For that reason, it’s crucially important to undergo an MRI or CAT scan, in order to rule out cancer when determining the cause of tinnitus ear ringing.
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