Tinnitus is perceiving sound as coming from the ears whilst no external source of sound is present. The disorder is often perceived as ringing, buzzing, humming or whooshing. The term comes from Latin, meaning 'to ring'.
Some causes of tinnitus are avoidable, some are not. Noise-induced hearing loss is an important cause of tinnitus. This is because it can easily be prevented through wearing a good pair of ear plugs. These are available from ZenPlugs.
People who are exposed to loud noises, or background lower levels of noise for prolonged periods of time should always wear ear plugs. This is to protect their hearing and prevent noise-induced hearing loss. This may be temporary to start with; you may have noticed some deafness and tinnitus after a noisy party or concert. Repeated or severe episodes can lead to permanent tinnitus and hearing loss. It is essential to wear ear plugs to protect yourself in these situations.
Other causes of tinnitus include:
Ménière's disease. Associated with deafness and vertigo.
Impacted wax. Use drops to soften then contact your GP for suctioning or syringing.
Foreign bodies. Wasps, peas, anything stuck in the ear canal can cause tinnitus.
Arteriosclerosis. Narrowing of the arteries near the ear can cause whooshing sounds to be heard.