January 22, 2009

The Prevalence Of Tinnitus Today

These are truly fast-paced and stressful times. The pace in which we work, live and do business may often lead to the development of a number of health disorders. Among these disorders include tinnitus, which is characterized by a noise or ringing in the ears. It’s a common concern today, and is believed to affect around one in five people. However, doctors are quick to point out that it isn't a condition itself, but rather a symptom of an underlying health disorder or ailment. It may be an indicator of diseases such as Meniere’s Disease, an injury to the inner ear, hearing loss, cardiovascular disorders, and depression. A number of doctors and medical researchers have done studies which should help in properly tracking the prevalence of tinnitus today, as well as in formulating more-improved treatment methods.

Tinnitus may also be an indication of age-related hearing loss, anxiety and chronic fatigue. Although it may not be bothersome for some, it’s a nagging and annoying condition for others. Apart from using conventional prescription medications to treat this, other treatment modes include the use of high-tech hearing aids and sound masking devices, which aim to reduce the level of noise, and make the noise less noticeable. It is estimated that around 35 million people are affected by it in the US alone. In better tracking the prevalence of tinnitus today, data from the US National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) indicates that tinnitus is more prevalent in men than women, and the chances of getting one increase with advancing age.

The study by the NCHS also notes that around 12 percent of men who are 65 to 74 years of age are affected, and whites are more prone to this than blacks. In addition, tinnitus cases are twice more prevalent in the South than in the Northeastern US. Despite these facts, a number of treatment methods for this disorder are unsuccessful, and some therapeutic modes have been frustrated by the inadequate understanding of the underlying physiological factors of tinnitus. However, despite the setbacks, the buzzing, whistling and ringing ears can be managed satisfactorily by most doctors and tinnitus support groups.

Most health experts credit the prevalence of tinnitus today to the increased incidences of fatigue, stress, anxiety and depression caused by these fast-paced times. A number of coping mechanisms have been implemented to reduce the noise and sound that sufferers feel, and some herbal, natural and homeopathic tinnitus treatments have also been studied to make the noise less noticeable, as well as allow patients to live less-stressful lives.

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