Around one-fifth of individuals experience tinnitus in some form or severity. These people perceive a ringing, buzzing, clicking, or hissing noise that no one else can hear. Some cases of tinnitus are constant while others are intermittent. Though there is no cure for the condition, tinnitus treatments do exist. If the underlying cause is untreatable, many options and tools can help reduce the intensity or frequency of the symptoms. The ultimate goal of these options is to improve the affected person’s quality of life.
Most people develop tinnitus as a symptom of some level of hearing loss. The current professional consensus is that the brain begins to change to adapt to this loss, and these changes eventually result in tinnitus. Hearing aids supplement the volume of exterior noise which allows a person with hearing loss to improve their hearing. The amplification of exterior sound also reduces the interior sounds of tinnitus. A 2007 study of 230 individuals found around 60 percent of patients experience minor to moderate relief from tinnitus while wearing hearing aids. Around 20 percent found major relief while wearing them.
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