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Tinnitus ( “tin-uh-tis”) is a symptom more commonly known as “ringing in the ear or head”. The term describes the perception of sound where there is no external sound stimulus. It is often described as ringing, buzzing, humming, etc. It is a very real sensation coming from the brain and affects individuals differently.
People describe their tinnitus as ringing, buzzing, chirping, roaring, hissing, horns, etc. Another less common description is music- known as musical tinnitus. Tinnitus is fairly common, estimated to effect approximately 15% of the US population. Some individuals are aware of their tinnitus at all times while others notice at different times such as bedtime.
While tinnitus can be temporary (after a loud night) or can be chronic (always there to some degree). It is a symptom of an underlying condition such as hearing loss, ear canal blockage, ear trauma, circulatory disorder, or something else. Unfortunately, many people with chronic tinnitus are told “learn to live with it” which is disheartening and increases anxiety and hopelessness.
While there is no “cure” that helps everyone the same, there are several successful ways to heal from and manage your tinnitus reducing its affect on your life. Dr. Tarvin is a member of the Tinnitus Practitioners Association and American Tinnitus Association and has completed specialized training (and ongoing training) to work with tinnitus and sound sensitivity patients.
Every tinnitus treatment plan is individualized since tinnitus affects people differently.
About 80% of individuals with tinnitus also have hearing loss. Research shows treating your hearing loss is the first strategy to managing tinnitus. There are other options for those needing more techniques and for those without hearing loss including comprehensive programs such as Cognitive Habituation Tinnitus Therapy (CHaTT), Progressive Tinnitus Management (PTM), Tinnitus Activities Treatment (TAT), and Tinnitus Retraining Therapy (TRT).
We Will Help You
We offer in-office and online tinnitus management programs based on your individual needs and preferences.
Ever hear quick bursts of sudden hearing loss (10 to 30 seconds) followed by whistling? This is known as “transient ear noise” and nearly everyone experiences this throughout their lifetime. This is completely normal and not categorized as tinnitus.
Where can I find additional information about tinnitus?
Read our Tinnitus Frequently Asked Questions.
We highly recommend the American Tinnitus Association as a resource.
The NIDCD maintains a directory of organizations that provide information on the normal and disordered processes of hearing, balance, taste, smell, voice, speech, and language.
Use the following keywords to help you find organizations that can answer questions and provide information on tinnitus:
Call Elevate Audiology at (864) 442-5555 for more information or to schedule an appointment.
“It’s truly an amazing thing when you find someone who is good at what they do, and Dr. Tarvin is exceptional! I have been struggling with tinnitus for over a year, and she was able to provide the hope I needed that this would not be something that would affect my life in a negative way permanently. She scheduled an appropriate amount of time (90 minutes) and completed thorough testing and answered all of my questions with expertise and patience. While she works out of an unassuming office in the small city of Easley, I couldn’t imagine finding anyone more capable and dedicated with what she does anywhere. I can’t thank her enough for not only providing me the assurance tinnitus does not need to be life impacting but also suggesting my hearing can even be better than it was before with some modern day tools. Yes, hearing aids at 49, but excitement that my world will open up beyond “what did you say”. I can’t begin to express how great I feel about Dr. Tarvin and Elevate Audiology.”
Robert V – April 18, 2021