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What causes tinnitus? Scientists and health experts don't know the exact physical cause of tinnitus, but several sources are known to trigger or make it worse, including: Loud noises and hearing loss – Exposure to loud noises can destroy the non-regenerative cilia (tiny hairs) in the cochlea, causing permanent tinnitus and/or hearing loss. Aging – As you age, those same cilia gradually deteriorate, which can lead to tinnitus and/or hearing loss. Ototoxic medications – Some prescription medications such as antibiotics, anti-inflammatories and antidepressants are harmful to the inner ear as well as the nerve fibers connecting the cochlea to the brain. Hearing conditions – Conditions such as otosclerosis and Ménière’s disease are known to cause tinnitus. Health conditions – Tinnitus can also be a symptom of health conditions like cardiovascular disease, hypertension, stress and head injuries.
Concerts, Loud Noises, and Tinnitus Loud concert? Ringing in your ears afterward? That’s called tinnitus. The average decibel level at a rock show is 110, loud enough to cause permanent damage after just 15 minutes. Hearing damage can occur with extended exposure of any noise over 85 decibels. Other risky sounds include leaf blowers and chain saws. Normal conversation registers at 60. Tinnitus can last for hours, days, weeks, or permanently. To prevent hearing damage or loss, use earplugs and limit your exposure.
What Is Tinnitus? Tinnitus (pronounced ti-ni-tis), or ringing in the ears, is the sensation of hearing ringing, buzzing, hissing, chirping, whistling, or other sounds. The noise can be intermittent or continuous, and can vary in loudness. It is often worse when background noise is low, so you may be most aware of it at night when you're trying to fall asleep in a quiet room. In rare cases, the sound beats in sync with your heart (pulsatile tinnitus).
Protect Ears Be especially careful about exposing yourself to loud environments if you've already had tinnitus.
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