You are here:---Why Do My Ears Ring? – William Leever

Why Do My Ears Ring? – William Leever


          PULSATILE TINNITUS – Characterized by heartbeat like sounds often caused by muscle movement or blood flow near the ears.

          NONPULSATILE TINNITUS – Associated with nerves pathways involved with hearing and may include one ear ringing, often being described as head ringing.

                               THE ABOVE TWO CATEGORIES INCLUDE :

Nerve Pathway Tinnitus

The nerve pathways are very delicate structures inside the hearing mechanism. Associated small hair cells transform fluid waves into nerve impulses. Serving a similar function to the ear as the cells of the eye’s retina, which transform light waves into nerve impulses. Swelling or irritation from many causes can easily create impairment of their function and cause ear ringing head noise.

Possible causes include: infection; allergic swelling; systemic diseases, either acute or chronic, with resultant toxic effects. Sudden exposure to explosive sound or extended exposure to high noise levels in susceptible people are causative as well as certain drugs such as excessive use of aspirin.  Small changes in the blood supply which change the nutrition to the area can result in one ear ringing or head ringing symptoms.

Muscular Tinnitus

This type of Tinnitus may result when one of the two muscles attached to the middle ear bones experiences a spasm, or from the spasm of muscles attached to the eustachian tube, which connects the middle ear to the back of the nose.  The spasms can create an ear clicking set of symptoms.

The middle ear has two important muscles associated within: the stapedius is attached to the stapes bone (commonly called the stirrup) and the tensor tympani muscle, attached to the malleus bone (commonly called the hammer).  The normal function of these muscles is to contract momentarily to loud noises.

If one or both of these muscles begin to contract in a rhythmic fashion, a repetitious clicking ear sound may occur as the Tinnitus symptom, because the muscles are attached to one of the middle ear (hearing) bones. This clicking in ear sound may subside without treatment on it’s own.

If the spasms continue, treatment with muscle relaxants or surgery to cut the spastic muscle may be recommended.

Palatal myoclonus is a muscular Tinnitus which can also create a rhythmic clicking in ear sound.  It results from the spasm of several throat muscles attached to the Eustachian tube.  Fortunately it is uncommon.

Vascular Tinnitus

The jugular vein and the carotid artery are major blood vessels supplying the brain and are intimately associated with the inner and middle ear.   

Occasionally, we all have heard our hearts beat or heard the whoosh of blood circulating through these vessels during strenuous exercise.  Pulsatile Tinnitus symptoms can result , should delicate ear structures become irritated or infected and create this head noise over a period of time. 

External Ear Tinnitus

Should the ear become blocked by excessive wax buildup, any foreign material or from swelling, a pressure on the eardrum can create a pulsatile Tinnitus symptom set.  These are often temporary conditions.

Middle Ear Tinnitus

Allergy, infection, injury, scar tissue, contributing to the impaired motion of the three middle ear bones can contribute to normal function of the middle ear creating Tinnitus symptoms. These disturbances often result in hearing impairment and may lead to head noise.

Inner Ear Tinnitus

Any condition which disturbs the fluid pressure in the inner ear chamber may produce head noise.  Infection, allergy or circulatory problems can produce changes in both the fluid or the encasing membranes of the inner ear.

*A Wall Street Journal article published on 12/14/2010 stated that a study by the Center For Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimated that some 2 million people have Tinnitus that has become so disturbing as to interfere with work, sleep, concentration and family relationships.

          The most common cause of Tinnitus is hearing loss due to aging, which is called presbycusis.  Another very familiar cause is acoustic trauma from working around loud noises, which leaves certain groups or occupations at high risk for this condition, such as airport workers or heavy equipment or factory employees.    Two groups in particular are military personnel and musicians.  The ATA states that Tinnitus is the number one service connected disablility of veterans returning from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan,  with Tinnitus topping the list of war related health costs from all periods of service.

       Musicians are at obvious risk with many famous artists coming forward about their Tinnitus conditions.  Ringing in ears after concert attendance is not uncommon and can bring on symptoms as well.  High volume personal music players contribute to the ringing in ears after concert effect and the ATA states that we now have 12 year olds complaining of Tinnitus symptoms, which we did not have previously.

         Clearly the best way to deal with Tinnitus is prevention.  But with the many factors contributing to the onset of Tinnitus symptoms, the best approach to treatment is one that is comprehensive, addressing the many health factors involved that support healthy hearing function.

For information on treating Tinnitus, please visit:

Source by William Leever

2017-07-21T03:52:41+00:00July 21st, 2017|Categories: Health and Fitness, Health Diseases|Tags: |Comments Off on Why Do My Ears Ring? – William Leever
%d bloggers like this: