Tinnitus is a problem where people are plagued all round their life from hearing noise in their head, ears. Jan Dawson suffered from it since she was three. She describes it as the noise similar to the soldiers marching up and down a metal spiral staircase. After 25 years later she says that the noises still persist and it never goes away. She being an exhibition designer tells that it drives her crazy. Statistics show that around 4.7 million people in the UK are affected by tinnitus.
The noise can be heard in one ear, both ears or in their head. The Royal National Institute for the Deaf (RNID) and the British Tinnitus Association (BTA) are aiming to raise awareness of the condition. Usually people whop are subjected to constant loud noise like musicians, club DJs or heavy industry workers, and suffer from this condition. But Jan says that when she was young she had a lot of ear infections and is worried that it could be on of the reasons. Jan says that it gets worse when she get stressed out which annoys her a lot.
According to the RNID and BTA, many people who suffer feel there is a lack of understanding from others. Karen Brunger of the RNID says that tinnitus can have a devastating effect on relationships and work lives. She also says that it can be very distressing and isolating. But the good news is that there are things that one can do to help manage the condition.
Patients with tinnitus can visit a GP in the hospital of ear, nose and throat department. There is currently no cure, but there are many ways to manage tinnitus through sound therapy, habituation therapy (this changes your sound response systems so that you gradually become less aware of the tinnitus), relaxation and hearing aids if a hearing loss is present.
Jan's tinnitus is a symptom of Meniere's disease which is an unexplained condition believed to be caused by excess fluid in the inner ears. While diuretic tablets may help ease some of the symptoms, Jan has found little to ease the misery of her tinnitus.
Recently she has detected that her hearing is not very sharp. Despite all this Jan refuses to let the condition take over her life. Hence she hopes that further research could alleviate her problem and others who are suffering from this condition.