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That ringing in your ears may be tinnitus. Learn more about what it is, the causes, and treatment options.



That ringing in your ears may be tinnitus. Learn more about what it is, the causes, and treatment options.

What is tinnitus?

Ringing. Buzzing. Clicking. Hissing. Roaring. Humming. Whistling. However you describe the sensation in your ears, it might be due to tinnitus. Tinnitus (pronounced “TIN-uh-tus” or “Tin-EYE-tus”) is hearing sound when there isn’t any noise. In most cases, other people can’t hear it.

Hear what tinnitus might sound like.

What causes tinnitus?

Tinnitus can result from damage to the hairs inside the cochlea, which is a hollow cavity that looks like a spiraled snail shell inside the inner ear. It can also occur due to problems with your jaw joint or the blood vessels on either side of your neck.

Tinnitus isn’t a disease.

It’s a symptom of a larger health issue. Here are some common causes of tinnitus:

Noise-induced hearing loss


Head injury

Blockages in the ear

Ear and sinus infections

High blood pressure

Certain medications



of adults have tinnitus*

What can be done about tinnitus?

Many people who suffer from tinnitus also have hearing loss. In this case, your brain creates its own background noise to make up for the lack of sound reaching the nerves in the ear. This is what leads to the ringing in your ears. You can likely improve your tinnitus by getting a hearing exam and treating any hearing loss you might have.

All major hearing aid manufacturers offer hearing aids that can help. In fact, most of the latest hearing aids have built-in tinnitus features. A hearing care provider can work with you to choose the right ones for your tinnitus, lifestyle, hearing loss profile, and budget. They can also ensure any special features or apps are turned on and connected when fitting hearing aids.

Other ways to find relief.

Smartphone apps or electronic devices (either wearable or tabletop) can help mask the ringing in your ears by playing random tones, music, pleasant sounds like ocean waves or rain, or white noise (which sounds like a gentle “shhh”).

Apps like MindEar can help you manage your tinnitus through a series of therapies and tools tailored for you. You can learn more and download the app at the link below.

“They popped in a demo hearing aid, and I just burst into tears. Because that’s the first time in months that I didn’t hear the ringing. I was so happy to just not hear it anymore.”

– Chris P., TruHearing customer

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