Modern Treatments

Modern Treatment Approaches to Tinnitus

Treatment for tinnitus varies depending on the severity of symptoms and what parts of the ears are involved. Ringing in the ears can be due to nerve ending damage as well as structural damages to the ears, which includes receptors, neurotransmitters, cochlea, and ion channels. If you want to know what the modern approach to treating tinnitus are, then keep on reading below.

Medications

  • Gabapentin and benzodiazepines- These drugs have the ability to activate GABA receptors, which significantly help patients with tinnitus. These drugs also have the ability to reduce neural activity in the inferior colliculus. However, these drugs should be used as directed by the physician. If taken in too much amount could lead to dependency and hallucinations.
  • Caroverine- It is a glutamate antagonist, which helps treat tinnitus. It is also used in treating Meniere’s disease and hearing loss.
  • Acamprosate- It offers tinnitus relief, but causes drowsiness too. Well, this side effect is seen as an advantage because patients suffering from tinnitus have difficulty sleeping at night. So, acamprosate is given before bedtime to help patients with tinnitus sleep soundly at night.Ginkgo biloba
  • Ginkgo biloba extract– It acts as a glutamate antagonist and at the same time a powerful antioxidant. It does not only help cure ringing in the ears, but also minimizes the damage to the ears secondary to buildup of free radicals.

Physiological Treatments

  • Transcranial magnetic stimulation- This method stimulates the nerve endings in the brain, especially the ones causing tinnitus. This works best for patients with short term tinnitus, but with normal hearing. However, it would take around 10 sessions for the improvement to be seen. However, this procedure shouldn’t be used to patients who have epileptic disorder, cardiac pace-maker, pregnant women, and those patients with electrical implants.

Surgical approach

In severe cases of tinnitus, the doctor will recommend surgery, but this should only be the last resort. As much as possible, surgical approach should only be done if all other methods fail to address tinnitus problem. Surgery may cause Cochlear_Implantserious side effects including the possibility of completely losing your ability to hear. The success rate of surgical approach depends on the general condition of the patient as well as the level of competency of the surgeon. So, you better choose the best in the industry. Some of the commonly performed surgeries are cochlear implant, cochlear and vestibulocochlear nerve ablation, stereotactic radiosurgery, and microvascular decompression.

As stated above one of the commonly used surgical approaches for tinnitus is cochlear implant. It is an electronic device implanted in the ear and is intended for patients who are suffering from profound bilateral hearing loss. Cochlear implant is very helpful in reducing tinnitus.

Other Approaches

  • Low level laser therapy (LLLT)- An infrared laser light will be applied to the external ear conduct, which proven to help patients who are suffering from chronic tinnitus. It helps get rid of tinnitus through the following ways:
    • Facilitating the synthesis of ATPLaser Light
    • Increasing the proliferation of cells
    • Increases the flow of blood into the inner ear
    • Boosting inner ear’s repair mechanism
  • Phase-Out Treatment- This is ideal to patients who are suffering from pure tone tinnitus at a regular frequency. This is very effective in reducing the volume of tinnitus sound. Research showed that 60% of patients who have undergone phase out treatment were able to see great results and improvement in tinnitus symptoms.
  • Neuromonics – The goal of this treatment is to desensitize tinnitus disturbance with the aid of a customized sound therapy. It uses different forms of stimuli like noise or music depending on the audio-metric profile of the patient. Just like any other treatment methods, it would take a few months for the improvement to be seen.
  • Tinnitus retraining therapy and cognitive behavioral therapy – This is another treatment for tinnitus.  These methods are used to modify undesirable thoughts and behaviors through reconditioning method. They enable the ears and brains to get used to the sounds produced by tinnitus and so the arousal level will be reduced. These techniques are proven to really work, especially to patients with disabling chronic tinnitus.
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