The ringing just won’t go away. That high pitched ringing in your ear has been nagging you since yesterday morning and it still hasn’t disappeared. You’re aware that the ringing is tinnitus but your starting to be concerned about how long it will keep going.
Tinnitus can be brought about by damage to the stereocilia inside your ears (the air vibrations that your ears turn into sound, are sensed by these tiny hairs). Usually, too much overly loud noise is the cause. That’s why when you’re sitting next to a roaring jet engine, eating at a noisy restaurant, or attending a concert, you notice tinnitus the most.
How Long Does Tinnitus Last on Average?
Tinnitus can’t be cured. But that doesn’t mean it’ll never subside. There will be a wide variety of factors that will influence how long your tinnitus will last, including your overall health and the root cause of your tinnitus.
But if you just returned home from a noisy day of traveling and you notice your ears buzzing, you can typically expect your tinnitus to fade away in a day or two. 16 to 48 hours typically is how long tinnitus will last. But it’s also not unusual for symptoms to stick around, often for as long as a couple of weeks. And tinnitus will return if you are exposed to loud sound again.
If tinnitus continues and is affecting your quality of life, you need to see a specialist.
Why is Tinnitus Sometimes Permanent?
Normally, tinnitus is short-lived. But sometimes it can be long-lasting. Especially when the cause of tinnitus is something outside the mundane When it comes to intensity and origin. Here are a few examples:
- Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI): The brain is where the majority of sound is processed. When those processors begin to misfire, as a result of traumatic brain trauma, tinnitus can be the outcome.
- Hearing Impairment: Often, tinnitus and hearing loss are joined at the hip. So you could end up with irreversible tinnitus no matter what the cause of your hearing loss.
- Repeated exposure: If your ears are buzzing after one rock concert, think of how they’ll feel after five rock concerts a week or if you’re a musician who performs concerts and practices all day. Frequent exposure to loud sounds can result in permanent hearing damage, including tinnitus.
Short term tinnitus is far more common than permanent tinnitus. But there are still millions of Us citizens every year who are treated for lasting, or chronic, tinnitus symptoms.
How Can You Get Your Tinnitus to go Away?
You will need to find relief as soon as possible regardless of whether your tinnitus is permanent or short term. There is no cure for tinnitus but you can do a few things to lessen the symptoms (though they will probably last only so long):
- Find a way to mask the sound: Sometimes, employing a white noise device (like a fan or humidifier) can help you cover up the noise of tinnitus and, thus, ignore the symptoms (and, you know, get a good night’s sleep in the process).
- Wear earplugs (or earmuffs): The next option, if you can’t steer clear of loud situations, is to wear ear protection. (And, really, whether you have tinnitus or not, you should wear hearing protection.)
- Avoid loud noises. Your symptoms might be extended or may become more intense if you keep exposing yourself to loud noises such as rock concerts or a jet engine.
- Try to remain calm: Maybe it sounds somewhat… abstract, but keeping calm can really help keep your tinnitus under control, mostly because increased blood pressure can trigger tinnitus flare-ups.
To be sure, if you have long-term tinnitus, none of these techniques will get rid of your tinnitus. But decreasing and managing your symptoms can be equally important.
When Will Your Tinnitus go Away?
In most cases, though, your tinnitus will subside without you needing to do anything about it. Your hearing should go back to normal within 16 to 48 hours. However, you will want to seek out a solution if your tinnitus persists. Discovering a workable treatment is the best way to finally get some relief. If you think you have hearing loss (which is commonly associated with tinnitus) you should have your hearing checked.