Is tinnitus driving you mad?
To get relief from Tinnitus is important to understand what it is and how osteopathy can help you to treat it. Let’s have a closer look!
What is tinnitus?
It’s a symptom with several possible underlying conditions. You feel like you are hearing noises in your ears or head, but there are none, like ringing in your ears, buzzing, whooshing or humming. In addition, It can be low, medium or high pitched and constant or on and off. Also, it can be in one or both ears, in the middle of your head or move around. It’s very common in all age groups, that is why a hearing test from a hearing testing clinic is necessary to detect the issue.
- Hearing loss. Wear and tear of inner ear hair cells (they move in response to pressure from sound waves and release electrical signal to brain, interpreted as sound).
- Loud noise. Exposure gradual noise over time or very loud noise for short time. For this reason, you should wear ear protection.
- Job or lifestyle. Putting your ears at risk: music industry, machinery, DJs, musicians, concerts, loud bangs i.e.: weapons, soldiers, (music through headphones advisable not over 60% volume).
- Ear infection. Temporary, but must be checked.
- Ear wax build up. Build up over time.
- Meniere disease. It is pressure in inner ear, often with vertigo.
- Otosclerosis. Abnormal bone growth inside the ear, one of the bones fuses with surrounding bone and can’t move, sound not transmitted efficiently, common in young people.
- Perforated ear drum. Changes in air pressure: scuba diving, flying, with pain in ear.
- Anaemia. Disrupts inner ear cells working, ischemia also increases blood flow in jugular vein as heart works harder to pump blood between heart and brain and passes through middle ear, resulting in ringing.
- Thyroid. Links between iron level and thyroid stimulating hormone.
- Benign tumour.
- Medicines side effects.
If you have hearing loss consult your GP. Here are some techniques you can try:
- Environmental, play natural sounds in background.
- Relaxation techniques to reduce loudness.
- Tdt (tinnitus desensitisation therapy), customised device to sharpen hearing and dampen tinnitus.
- Trt (tinnitus retraining therapy), train brain to tune it out, less aware of it.
- Deep breathing exercises.
- Occupy your mind with absorbing activities so you are less aware of it.
- The higher your stress, the higher tinnitus, demands on you are too high, too much to do.
Osteopathy and tinnitus
There is some very strong evidence that Osteopathy has been successful in relieving symptoms of tinnitus by using either cranial or structural methods.
A structural approach would concentrate on your neck, occipital area, jaw broadly speaking as follows:
- Work on your respiratory diaphragm.
- Soft tissue works on muscles attaching from the head to the neck, sternocleidomastoid, digastric, etc.
- Upper back, neck, Jaw alignment.
- Disengage compression of occiput from neck.
- Release of muscles from neck to upper ribs.
- Release from shoulder blade area to neck/head.
- Tender points around jaw, including muscles inside the mouth at back of jaw.
- Tender points around ears.
- Myofascial release.
- Treat mirroring areas in pelvis, torsions, imbalances.
A cranial approach would concentrate on:
- Myofascial release to restore normal alignment.
- Treat dysfunction of cranial bones: temporal, occipital, sphenoid.
- Address cranial restrictions in temporal bone motion.
- Respiratory and pelvic diaphragms release.
- Unwind fascial restrictions, also around ear.
- Cerebrospinal fluid balance.
6 things you should know about tinnitus
- Caffeine has no effect on tinnitus.
- Yes, there’s an app for that: google play app “tinnitus”, try a few and see what suits you.
- 30% of all people will experience it at some point in their lives, including children.
- Thoughts influence how you feel. Change what you tell yourself to reduce its impact on your life. Change things that cause you stress.
- Toxic chemicals in cigarette smoke are linked with chronic ear infections and tinnitus.
- 60% of war veterans suffer from tinnitus, it’s dubbed “the war sound”.
We hope this information is useful for you. If you have any questions about our treatments, please contact us. You can find us 3 mins away from Angel station in Islington. If you like this blog, please share!
We are always happy to help.