Has the rate of tinnitus increased over the years? Tinnitus is a condition wherein a person hears buzzing, ringing, hissing, and chirping in their ears with no physical source of the sound. Tinnitus is getting more common then you have probably thought it is. Around 32% of the US population has or ever had tinnitus, which are nearly 50 million people. Putting it more simply; the presence of tinnitus is approximately in one in ten adults. Let us have a look at how the rate of tinnitus has increased over the years and what can be the possible prevention and treatment.
The Patterns of Growing Tinnitus Rates
Several studies involving analysis of healthcare settings have helped in knowing the growing pattern of tinnitus. Overall the adults between the ages of 30-60 are more likely to get tinnitus. The leading cause is exposure to too much noise.
People with regular noise exposure are 20% more at risk of tinnitus than those who do not have much noise exposure at work. The duration of work in noise exposure areas is also a very important factor in this regard. People with work experience in noisy areas over ten years have 25% chances of tinnitus, whereas people with 0-2 years of work duration have a 13% prevalence of tinnitus.
One of the studies explains that men have 52% more chances of getting tinnitus than women.
Another factor was the exposure of loud recreational noise. Adults with exposure to loud recreational noise at least a month had prevalence of 23% whereas those without the exposure had 7% of chances of getting tinnitus.
Why Is There an Increase in the Rate of Tinnitus?
Tinnitus mainly occurs due to cochlear damage. As we use modern machines and technologies, we make the world a noisier place to live in. The increase in the number of automobiles and vehicles has made the roads and streets noisy. You may feel unaffected with the traffic noise because you have developed a habit listening to it all the time. However, you might not have a clear idea of how noise is slowly degenerating the parts of your ears.
You are more likely to damage our cochlea even if you avoid noisy places but have earphones in your ears all the time.
Another reason for tinnitus is the auditory and respiratory-related disease. With the misuse of antibiotics, we have helped bacteria to develop resistance and pathogenicity. Thus, the prevalence and spread of respiratory infections are at the highest point than they ever were in history. The blockage of respiratory passage and ear canals caused due to infections is an underlying cause of tinnitus.
Certain antibiotics, antidepressants, anti-inflammatory, and quinine medications have tinnitus as a possible side effect.
It is necessary to minimize the noise exposures as much as you can, to protect yourself from ear-related problems like Tinnitus. If your workplace has too much noise exposure, you should take all the necessary precautions you can to minimize the noise and protect your ears. Use good quality ear protection and get an examination of your ears regularly.
If you or your loved one already experience tinnitus then contact us at 646-213-2321 to book a consultation. Treat your tinnitus with best of our cognitive therapies before it gets too late. Stephen Geller Katz LCSW offers Tinnitus Cognitive Therapy sessions in his NYC office and online sessions.
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