Woman with hands to her ears in pain wondering when the ringing in her ears will stop.

You might have a common reaction when you first notice that ringing in your ears: pretend everything’s ok. You go through your day the same as usual: you have a conversation with friends, go to the store, and cook lunch. While you simultaneously try your best to ignore that ringing. Because you feel sure of one fact: your tinnitus will go away on its own.

You start to worry, though, when after a couple of days the ringing and buzzing is unrelenting.

You’re not the only one to ever find yourself in this position. Tinnitus can be a tricky little condition, at times it will go away by itself and sometimes, it will stay for a longer period of time.

When Tinnitus is Likely to Disappear on Its Own

Tinnitus is incredibly common around the world, nearly everyone’s had a bout here and there. In almost all situations, tinnitus is basically temporary and will ultimately vanish on it’s own. A rock concert is a good example: you go see Bruce Springsteen at your local stadium (it’s a good show) and when you go home, you realize that there is ringing in your ears.

Within a few days the type of tinnitus connected to injury from loud noise will commonly disappear (but you realize that it’s just part of going to a loud show).

Over time loss of hearing can develop from temporary or “acute” to permanent or “chronic” because of this exact type of injury. Too many of those types of concerts and you could end up with permanent tinnitus.

When Tinnitus Doesn’t Seem to be Getting Better by Itself

If your tinnitus lingers for over three months it’s then identified as chronic tinnitus (but you should have it examined by a specialist long before that).

Around 5-15% of people globally have recorded indications of chronic tinnitus. While there are some understood close associations (like loss of hearing, as an example), the causes of tinnitus aren’t yet very well comprehended.

Usually, a quick cure for tinnitus will be unidentifiable if the causes aren’t obvious. There is a good possibility that your tinnitus won’t disappear by itself if you have been hearing the ringing for more than three months. But if this is your situation, you can protect your quality of life and control your symptoms with some treatment options (such as noise canceling devices and cognitive behavioral therapy).

It’s Significant to Know What The Cause of Your Tinnitus is

When you can determine the underlying cause of your tinnitus, dealing with the condition suddenly becomes much simpler. As an example, if your tinnitus is created by a persistent, bacterial ear infection, treatment with an antibiotic will tend to solve both problems, resulting in a healthy ear and crystal-clear hearing.

Here are some likely causes of acute tinnitus:

  • Eardrum damage (such as a perforated eardrum)
  • Chronic ear infections
  • Hearing loss (again, this is often associated with chronic tinnitus)
  • A blockage in the ear or ear canal
  • Meniere’s disease (this usually has no cure and is often associated with chronic tinnitus)

The Big Question…Will my Tinnitus Ever Subside?

The truth is that in most cases, yes, your tinnitus will go away by itself. But it becomes increasingly more likely that you’re dealing with chronic tinnitus the longer these noises remain.

You believe that if you just forget it should vanish on its own. But there may come a point where your tinnitus begins to become irritating, where it’s difficult to focus because the sound is too disruptive. In those situations, wishful thinking might not be the complete treatment plan you need.

Most of the time tinnitus is just the body’s answer to loud noise that could be damaging over time and will go away on its own. Whether that’s chronic or acute tinnitus, well, only time will tell.

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.

Medical information dates as new research comes out all the time - if you have a concern about your hearing, please call us.

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