In 2021, a survey conducted by the National Institute of Health (NIH) showed that an estimated 15 percent of Americans suffer from tinnitus. With such a high prevalence of tinnitus, it is not surprising that many people are now asking, “Does tinnitus cause vertigo?” It is important to understand the relationship between tinnitus and vertigo to properly address any associated symptoms.
What is Tinnitus?
Tinnitus is the medical term used to describe the perception of sound in one or both ears in the absence of any external sound source. People who suffer from tinnitus often describe a ringing, whooshing, buzzing, or clicking sound. It may be continuous or intermittent and can vary in intensity. This condition can be accompanied by feelings of anxiety and depression due to the irritating nature of the sound.
What is Vertigo?
Vertigo is the sensation of spinning or swaying that can occur with changes in head position, movement, or when standing still. It is often accompanied by nausea, vomiting, and balance problems. Some people also experience headaches, sweating, and visual disturbances. This condition can be caused by a variety of medical conditions such as inner ear infections, head injuries, and stroke.
How are Tinnitus and Vertigo Connected?
Tinnitus and vertigo are both associated with changes in the inner ear structure, which is responsible for balance and hearing. The inner ear contains tiny hair cells which can be damaged by loud noises, illnesses, or medications. When these hair cells are damaged, it can lead to hearing loss, tinnitus, and vertigo. Additionally, some people who suffer from tinnitus also have vertigo, although it is unclear why this occurs.
How to Treat Tinnitus and Vertigo
There is no cure for tinnitus or vertigo, however, there are treatments available to reduce the severity of the symptoms. For tinnitus, treatments include sound therapy and medications to help reduce the intensity of the sound. For vertigo, treatments include medications to reduce the spinning sensation and physical therapy to help improve balance and coordination.
When to See a Doctor
If you are experiencing symptoms of tinnitus or vertigo, it is important to see a doctor. A doctor can determine the cause of your symptoms and recommend the best treatment plan for you. Additionally, it is important to monitor your symptoms, as they can worsen over time. If your symptoms become more intense or you experience any other changes, it is important to seek medical attention.
Tinnitus and vertigo are both common conditions that can have a significant impact on a person’s life. If you are suffering from either condition, it is important to speak to a doctor to determine the best treatment plan for you. While there is no cure for either condition, there are treatments available to help reduce the severity of symptoms.