Will a Hearing Aid Help with Ringing in My Ears?

06/12/2024 | Patient Resources, Tinnitus

Hearing aids can be an effective tool in managing tinnitus, helping to mask the internal noise and improve your overall quality of life.

Ringing in the ears, known as tinnitus, can be a frustrating and sometimes debilitating condition.

As an audiologist, I often get asked, “Will a hearing aid help with the ringing in my ears?” The answer is, quite simply, yes.

Hearing aids can be an effective tool in managing tinnitus for many individuals.

How Do Hearing Aids Help with Tinnitus?

Hearing aids help by amplifying external sounds, which can make tinnitus less noticeable. When your ears pick up more sounds from your environment, it helps to mask the internal ringing, buzzing, or hissing that you experience with tinnitus. This process is known as sound enrichment.

In addition to general amplification, many modern hearing aids come equipped with specialized sound therapy features designed specifically for tinnitus management.

These features can generate soothing sounds, such as white noise or nature sounds, which can further help reduce the perception of tinnitus and provide relief and relaxation.

Key Features to Look for in Hearing Aids for Tinnitus

When choosing a hearing aid to help manage tinnitus, there are several features you should consider:

1. Behind-the-Ear Amplification:

This type of hearing aid can provide the necessary sound enrichment to make the tinnitus less noticeable.

2. Tinnitus Sound Therapy:

Hearing aids with customizable sound therapy programs can help you manage tinnitus more effectively.

3. Customizable Settings:

The ability to adjust volume and programs, as well as Bluetooth connectivity, allows patients to stream calming sounds or music directly from their smartphone or other devices.

4. Professional Programming and Fine-Tuning:

Proper programming and fine-tuning by an audiologist are crucial to ensure the hearing aid is set up to best address your specific tinnitus needs.

The Benefits of Hearing Aids for Tinnitus Patients

Using hearing aids for tinnitus management offers two main benefits:

1. Reduced Awareness of Tinnitus:

Hearing aids amplify external sounds, which helps mask the tinnitus noise, making it less noticeable.

2. Improved Communication:

By addressing hearing loss, hearing aids can improve overall communication, which can reduce stress and improve quality of life.

Research indicates that about 75% of patients report that their tinnitus becomes less noticeable when they start using hearing aids. While some patients notice an improvement immediately, for others, it may take a few months of consistent use to see a significant difference.

Alternatives to Hearing Aids for Tinnitus

While hearing aids are effective for many people, there are other options available for managing tinnitus:

1. Sound Therapy:

This involves using devices like white noise machines or nature sound generators to mask tinnitus.

2. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT):

CBT helps individuals develop coping strategies and reduce the emotional distress associated with tinnitus.

3. Mindfulness and Relaxation Techniques:

Practices such as meditation, deep breathing exercises, and muscle relaxation can help reduce the stress and anxiety linked to tinnitus.

4. Lifestyle Changes:

Reducing caffeine intake, avoiding loud noises, exercising regularly, maintaining a healthy diet, and ensuring proper sleep can all contribute to better tinnitus management.

Will I Still Hear Tinnitus When Wearing a Hearing Aid?

It’s possible that you might still hear some tinnitus when you first start wearing a hearing aid. However, over time, and with consistent use, many patients find that the ringing becomes less noticeable.

The key is to wear the hearing aids daily and to make any necessary lifestyle adjustments to support your overall ear health.

How Long Does It Take for Hearing Aids to Help with Tinnitus?

The time it takes to notice an improvement with hearing aids can vary from person to person. Some may see results almost immediately, while for others, it might take a month or even a few months.

Consistent use of the hearing aids is crucial, along with managing other factors such as stress and caffeine intake.

Getting Help for Tinnitus

Hearing aids are a valuable tool in managing tinnitus, helping to mask the internal noise and improve your overall quality of life. If you’re struggling with tinnitus, it’s essential to consult with an audiologist who specializes in tinnitus management.

They can help determine the most appropriate options for your needs and provide the necessary support and guidance throughout your treatment.

We are dedicated to helping you achieve better hearing health. If you have any questions or need to schedule an appointment, please contact us today.

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Dr. Anum K. Khan Au.D., CCC-A

Dr. Anum Khan was raised in Dallas; she received her Bachelor of Science in Speech and Hearing Sciences and Doctorate in Audiology degrees from the University of Texas at Dallas. She completed her one-year externship at the Callier Center for Communication Disorders. Prior to joining Holland Hearing Center in Abilene, Dr. Khan dedicated seven years of her professional career to serving the Dallas community, where she recognized the growing demand for hearing care services in smaller cities. Dr. Khan is committed to providing compassionate and personalized hearing care by offering counseling, education, and support to individuals and families dealing with hearing loss. Furthermore, Dr. Khan acknowledges the prevailing issue of loneliness and isolation, as highlighted by the U.S. surgeon general, Vivek Murthy. In light of the current technological advancements and societal trends, Dr. Khan aims to combat this epidemic by enhancing communication between individuals and between different generations. Dr. Khan enjoys spending time with family especially her children, traveling, reading, and learning about arts and technology.

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