Tinnitus in Adults
Tinnitus in adults is just as common as tinnitus in children.There are two types of tinnitus: Objective tinnitus and subjectivetinnitus. Objective tinnitus can be heard by an examiner andtypically occurs from blood flow or muscle movement. The mostcommon type of tinnitus is subjective tinnitus, where the sound isonly heard by the person who has tinnitus. About 10% of the generalpopulation have subjective tinnitus while the subjective tinnitusin adults over the age of 50 is as many as 30%. When tinnitus inadults lasts for three months or more, it is consideredchronic.
What Increases the Risk of Tinnitus in Adults?
Aging is a natural process that could bring about hearing loss,which is a common cause of tinnitus in adults; however, adults maybe at a higher risk of developing tinnitus if they have a historyof smoking (which could lead to a higher risk of hearing loss),experience high levels of stress (adults experience higher levelsof stress than children which increases the severity and risk oftinnitus), consume large amounts of alcohol, or encounterconsistent noise exposure at their workplace. There are also someconditions that are linked to the development of tinnitus inadults. Those who have a history of the following can increase therisk of developing tinnitus in adults:
Asthma - Asthma could have an impact on your hearing andlead to the development of tinnitus.
- Depression - There is a connection between tinnitus anddepression. Those diagnosed with depression can see it worsen withtinnitus as tinnitus is known to escalate it. Stress and anxietycan also increase the risk and severity of tinnitus, two factorsthat are seen in depression.
- Hyperlipidemia - In hyperlipidemia, your blood has toomany lipids (fats), such as triglycerides and cholesterol. Thosewho are diagnosed with hyperlipidemia who follow a low fat/lowcholesterol diet can help reduce their blood cholesterol andtriglyceride levels, which in turn can reduce their tinnitussymptoms.
- Thyroid Disease - Thyroid health affects every cell in thebody, with hyperthyroidism (thyroid produces too much thyroxinehormone) and hypothyroidism (does not produce enough of thethyroxine hormone) being linked to hearing loss – overall affectinghearing loss, tinnitus, and your balance).
- Osteoarthritis - Osteoarthritis occurs when yourprotective cartilage on the ends of your bones wears down overtime. Osteoarthritis causes a higher risk of developing middle earabnormalities and hearing loss – resulting in tinnitus.
- Rheumatoid Arthritis - A symptom of rheumatoid arthritisis worsening hearing loss, which can put you at a higher risk ofdeveloping tinnitus.
To see a more complex list of other causes of tinnitus, pleasesee our article on tinnitus causes.
Severity of Tinnitus in Adults
Tinnitus in adults is usually worse than the tinnitus inchildren. The rate of discomfort from tinnitus is rated highest inthe elderly as the phantom noise of tinnitus is found to be louderin patients who are over 40 and tinnitus being rated ascatastrophic for those over 60. As we age, our bodies may also havea more difficult time adjusting to the changes of tinnitus. Inaddition, those who might have experienced tinnitus at a youngerage without receiving treatment can have their tinnitus worsen withage since the body was never able to repair or heal the cause of itwhen they were younger.
No matter the severity of tinnitus in adults, their body willexperience a slower healing process in their tinnitus treatmentthan children with tinnitus due to their age. Ratings of normal,mild, borderline, moderate, and severe tinnitus are all more commonfor those ages 40 and above – with the most severe frequencyaffecting those who are between the ages of 40-60 years old.Because the body heals slower as it matures, it is best to seek abeneficial treatment that can help correct the cause of tinnitus assoon as tinnitus symptoms are noticed.
Tinnitus and Everyday Life for Adults
Tinnitus in adults shows a clear impact on how tinnitus affectsan adult’s quality of life. Tinnitus affects a patient more so interms of stress levels and physical pain, and not so mentally oremotionally. In a study about tinnitus and how it differs among agegroups, patients above the age of 40 years had more complaintsabout the loudness and annoyance of tinnitus as well as havinghigher stress and severity scores. Tinnitus was also noted to belouder in patients who were above the age of 40 years; so, whatkind of impact does this have on their day to day lives?
As a parent, it could take away time from your children orspouse and increase stress on the entire family. As irritationarises from having tinnitus, communication is not always easy dueto the increased levels of stress tinnitus brings about which canchange up your behavior and the phantom noises can get in the wayof speaking or hearing clearly.
When it comes to work, tinnitus can interrupt your focus and getin the way of thinking clearly – making your job even morestressful. If your job is constantly around loud noises, it is theperfect setup for making your tinnitus worse. About 23 percent ofadults keep their tinnitus to themselves, fearing it couldnegatively affect their future employment opportunities. Otheradults with tinnitus felt that their employers or co-workers wereincapable of understanding tinnitus. This often makes them feelalone and stress about their performance when compared to otherworkers and there have been reports of tinnitus becoming souncomfortable that sufferers have left their jobs.
As adults, we have more responsibilities to handle and tinnitusin adults can stop one from being productive and moving forward. Adysfunction in an adult’s life can cause a dysfunction in manyother aspects such as family, career, and relationships that maygreatly change and affect their quality of life. If you or a lovedone is suffering from tinnitus, it may be time to consider anall-natural chiropractic treatment for tinnitus as it has beenshown to be extremely beneficial for improving and eliminatingtinnitus in adults.