Tinnitus is the medical term for “hearing” noises in your ears. It occurs when there is no outside source of the sounds.
Tinnitus is often called “ringing in the ears” but it can also sound like blowing, roaring, buzzing, hissing, humming, whistling or sizzling.
Tinnitus is common. According to the American Tinnitus Association more than 45 million Americans experience tinnitus, approximately 20 million people struggle with burdensome tinnitus, and 2 million have debilitating cases.
It is not known exactly what causes a person to “hear” sounds with no outside source of the noise. However, tinnitus can be a symptom of almost any ear problem, including:
Your health care provider may order the following tests:
If the cause of your tinnitus is known, fixing that problem (such as removing wax from your ear or treating the ear infection) may make the tinnitus go away.
Some medications can help relieve symptoms, but no drug works for everyone.
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