Tinnitus varies for each individual, with some seeing it as a minor inconvenience while others suffer from high levels of stress. Tinnitus often causes ringing in the ears; however, the perception of this sound varies from person to person. Tinnitus is common in 15%-20% of older adults. Tinnitus is experienced differently by each person due to the variety of sounds heard, such as static, ringing, screeching, crickets, hissing, roaring, sirens, whooshing, pulsing, dial tones, ocean waves, clicking, buzzing, and even music.
Subjective vs. Objective Tinnitus
Tinnitus is mainly divided into two main types: Subjective and Objective Tinnitus.
Subjective tinnitus is the most prevalent type of tinnitus, and it is a condition where individuals hear sounds or ringing that are not externally present. This type of tinnitus is only audible to the affected person and cannot be heard by others. A range of factors, such as exposure to loud noises, the natural aging process, certain medications, or underlying health conditions can cause subjective tinnitus.
While there are various treatment options available for subjective tinnitus, including sound therapy, counseling, and medications, it is, unfortunately, often a permanent condition for many individuals.
Objective tinnitus is a rare form of tinnitus where the ringing or sounds can be heard by both the affected individual and an examiner. This type of tinnitus is caused by physical issues within the body, such as blood flow abnormalities, muscle spasms, or changes in the middle ear bones. Objective tinnitus can be diagnosed through a physical examination and specialized tests.
The treatment for objective tinnitus is usually focused on resolving the underlying cause, which can include medications, surgery, or other interventions. Unlike subjective tinnitus, objective tinnitus is not a permanent condition and can be treated effectively with the right medical attention.
The right time to see a doctor While some individuals may not be severely impacted by tinnitus, for others, it can be a significant disruption to their daily life. If you are bothered by tinnitus, it is crucial to consult an ENT doctor. If you develop tinnitus following an upper respiratory illness, such as a cold, and it persists for more than a week, and you are based in Dubai, make an appointment to see Dr. Tarabichi. He has years of experience in successfully treating different types of tinnitus, so you can be assured of receiving world-class treatment in his clinic.