If you have tinnitus, the sound you experience can make it hard to concentrate, sleep, work or enjoy your life. You may wonder if it will ever go away or get better.
The experts at Cleveland Clinic are here to help find ways to manage your tinnitus. We listen to what you’re experiencing and take the time to get to know you. Working as a team, we can find solutions to each challenge you face — letting you get back to enjoying life.
Why Choose Cleveland Clinic for Tinnitus Care?
When you come to Cleveland Clinic for tinnitus care, you meet with experts in neurology, audiology and dentistry. Each team member brings years of experience and expertise to help you manage tinnitus. Meet our team.
We understand how hard it can be to live with tinnitus. We help you manage symptoms so you can better cope with it and fully take part in the activities you enjoy.
After a group education session, you meet with each of our specialists individually. They assess your symptoms and schedule you for a second appointment if it looks like more evaluation would help. Then, you get a full report with personalized recommendations and strategies to help you manage tinnitus.
Diagnosing Tinnitus at Cleveland Clinic
As you start down the road towards tinnitus management, your healthcare providers will take the time to talk to you about the details of this condition as you go. This starts with discussing what tinnitus is, the types and why you might have it.
There are two types of tinnitus that you can have:
- Somatosensory tinnitus: Sounds your brain perceives when you move the muscles in your jaw or neck.
- Subjective tinnitus: Sounds only you can hear.
When it comes to why this is happening to you, there might not be a simple answer. Tinnitus can have many causes. Our approach means you see a team of specialty providers to find the best ways to manage it. Before scheduling your appointment, we ask you to:
- Have a hearing test during the six months before your appointment: Understanding how hearing loss may be contributing to the tinnitus helps us determine next steps.
- See a doctor who works on the ear, nose and throat (called an otolaryngologist): They’ll make sure you don’t have any conditions that need to be medically or surgically treated first.
Then you’ll have two sessions with our experts. You begin with a 1.5- to 2-hour small group educational session. You’re not alone during this appointment. You’ll be with other people who are experiencing tinnitus. During this session, our specialists talk about causes of tinnitus and explain strategies for managing symptoms.
The second session includes an in-person individual screening with each of your providers. That’s when we’ll provide recommendations for managing your tinnitus. You’ll also get a report outlining everything we discuss with you.
We believe in working as a team to take care of you. With this approach, there are a variety of different healthcare providers you’ll work with, including:
Our neurology experts talk with you about your medical history and look at the muscles and bones in your head and neck. They review any medications and supplements you take to see if tinnitus may be a side effect.
Cleveland Clinic dental experts examine your neck, jaw and bite (how your teeth come together). They look at the temporomandibular joint (TMJ), which connects your jawbone to your skull, for signs of TMJ disorders.
Our audiology (hearing) experts determine whether sound therapy would be effective in helping you manage tinnitus.
Who Treat Tinnitus
Tinnitus Treatment at Cleveland Clinic
When your tinnitus has an underlying medical cause, a specialist typically treats that condition first. But sometimes, there’s no clear-cut reason why tinnitus is happening.
When that’s the case, our experts work with you to create personalized treatment plans that help you manage tinnitus symptoms. We offer:
Cognitive behavioral therapy and other behavioral therapies
Tinnitus can cause – and result from – anxiety and stress. We teach you strategies to cope with anxiety. We also offer mindfulness training to help distract you from tinnitus.
We help you manage how tinnitus affects your life. Strategies include:
- Auditory distraction: We teach you to distract yourself from tinnitus by creating a sound-enriched environment. We recommend white noise such as a fan or low-level television sounds for you to focus on.
- Sound therapy: Our audiologists may recommend a device worn in the ear to help you listen to sounds other than tinnitus. We may also recommend headphones or earbuds playing sounds you enjoy.
Cleveland Clinic dental experts may recommend oral appliances like nightguards to ease muscle pain in your jaw and neck.
Our experts may suggest adjusting certain medications or supplements when tinnitus is a side effect.
We may recommend you see a physical therapist who will design exercises to strengthen your jaw, neck and back. They may teach you how to stretch your neck and shoulders.
Taking the Next Step
With tinnitus, there’s often no one answer on how to make it go away. It can take several different treatments that you do all at the same time to find relief. At Cleveland Clinic, we use a team to treat your tinnitus. Working together, we’ll work through each part of the issue to help you enjoy your daily life.
Getting an appointment with Cleveland Clinic’s tinnitus experts is easy. We’re here to help you get the care you need.
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