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Plant City Observer Thursday, Jul. 12, 2018 4 months ago

Doctor's Note: Do You Hear That?

Tinnitus can be annoying, frustrating, and for some people, scary when it first occurs.
by: Columnist Columnist

Tinnitus can be annoying, frustrating, and for some people, scary when it first occurs. A person with
tinnitus often hears ringing in the ears, but they may also hear hissing, clicking or even whistling sounds.
It can be temporary, or it can be chronic and persistent. The sound can be loud or soft, can change in
pitch, and can be heard in one or both ears. Each person who has tinnitus describes it in a different way.
It is estimated that 10% - 15% of the population experience tinnitus. Studies have shown that it
increases with age, often occurring in people 50 years of age, but children and adolescents can
experience it as well.

There is no cure for tinnitus, but there are ways of managing it. The first step that an individual should
take is to schedule an appointment for an audiological assessment. An audiologist will make sure there
are no underlying medical issues that need to be treated. If someone has a hearing impairment and
tinnitus, using hearing aids can help in several ways. Hearing aids can amplify sounds from the
environment, which will help people pay less attention to the internal noise created by tinnitus.
A second step when treating tinnitus is to learn stress-management techniques. These can be learned
from an audiologist or from a variety of books and internet sources. For some people, stress may be a
trigger for a reoccurrence of tinnitus. For others, high levels of stress can reduce their patience and
increase their frustration with this condition. It is important to make time to relax and reduce your
stress levels.
“If tinnitus affects your quality of life by reducing your sleep, your performance at work, or reduces your
ability to concentrate and makes tasks in your everyday life less enjoyable, seek treatment from an
audiologist,” state Dr. Sophia Escobar, an audiologist with Florida E.N.T. & Allergy. “An exam can
determine the underlying causes of tinnitus and help guide treatment planning.”
The audiologists at Florida E.N.T. & Allergy have been helping pediatric and adult patients in the Tampa
Bay area for more than 40 years. With 11 convenient locations, our experienced team specializes in all
aspects of hearing care. For more information about Florida E.N.T. & Allergy, visit

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