Woman grimacing with hand on the left side of her head suffering from tinnitus

Do you have ringing in your ears that’s driving you mad? Discover whether your tinnitus is inherited or what the cause may be.

What is tinnitus?

Tinnitus is the name referring to a person’s perception of a ringing, droning, or buzzing in the ear with no external stimulus present to explain this experience. The term tinnitus translates to “ringing like a bell.”

How will tinnitus impact my daily living?

Tinnitus can be annoying and can interrupt intimate interactions. It’s normally a sign that you have damaged hearing or some root health condition and not a disease in and of itself. You might hear tinnitus in one ear or both ears and it can hinder your ability to concentrate.

Regardless of how you’re experiencing tinnitus, it is always disruptive. Tinnitus can affect your sleep and even cause anxiety and depression.

What are the causes of tinnitus?

Tinnitus can be constant or temporary. Temporary varieties of tinnitus are normally triggered by extended exposure to loud noises, like a rock concert. There are a few medical issues that tend to go hand-in-hand with tinnitus.

A few of the conditions that may play host to tinnitus include:

  • Injuries to the neck or head
  • Changes in the structure of the ear bone
  • Bruxism, more commonly known as teeth grinding caused by temporomandibular joint problems, or TMJ disorder
  • Inner ear infections
  • Exposure to loud sound for sustained periods of time
  • Age-related hearing loss
  • Inner ear cell damage and irritation of the sensitive hairs used to conduct sound, causing random transmissions of sound to your brain
  • Injuries that impact nerves of the ear
  • Different medications
  • Acoustic neuroma where a benign tumor forms on the cranial nerve running from the inner ear to the brain
  • Accumulation of excessive earwax
  • Meniere’s Disease
  • Depression or anxiety

Is it possible that my parents may have passed down the ringing in my ears?

Tinnitus isn’t directly inherited. However, your genes can play a role in this symptom. For instance, ear bone changes that can lead to tinnitus can be inherited. Abnormal bone growth can cause these changes and can be handed down through genetics. Here are a few other conditions you could have inherited that can result in tinnitus:

  • Specific diseases
  • Predisposition to anxiety or depression
  • Being prone to inner ear infections or wax build-up

You can’t directly inherit tinnitus, but there are conditions that become breeding grounds for tinnitus which you may have inherited.

If you have a history of tinnitus in your family, it’s truly in your best interest to make an appointment with us so we can evaluate your hearing.

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The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.

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