Can tinnitus go away?

what you need to know

If you suffer from tinnitus, give our office a call today at (425) 686-4498 to schedule your initial consultation to learn more about how we can help.

Acupuncture for headaches

Can tinnitus go away?

Tinnitus, aka ringing in your ears, is a common yet poorly understood disorder. It is often associated with sudden, temporary hearing loss, high or low pitch buzzing or ringing sounds. Some even describe it as a “siren like noise.” It can affect one or both ears and can have a powerful detrimental impact on a person’s quality of life. 

What is tinnitus?

Tinnitus may result in sleep disturbances, fatigue, headache, frustration, and affect all aspects of daily life. It is estimated that 10-15% of the general population experiences a persistent sensation of tinnitus. While the cause of tinnitus is often idiopathic (no known cause), many patients experience ringing in the ears after high stress, viral infection, taking certain medications, emergence of hearing loss, sudden exposure to loud noise, and more. The pathophysiological mechanism of tinnitus is still unclear, and the disease is difficult to treat. The first step when someone starts to notice tinnitus should be to see an audiologist to determine if there is hearing loss or any vestibular changes happening. Often, those with tinnitus will find out that “all their tests are normal” and there really is nothing that can be done to help. It can be quite frustrating and often people seek alternative ways to help tinnitus, including acupuncture. Because no other therapies, including pharmacological treatment, can be considered to have well-established effectiveness in reducing tinnitus symptoms and the related quality of life. 

How can acupuncture help?

Acupuncture works by rebalancing the nervous system, helping to decrease local and systemic inflammation, and pain reduction. One of the ways that acupuncture may help, especially for those with stress induced tinnitus and for those with musculoskeletal contributing factors such as TMJ, neck pain and tension, is for calming the sympathetic stress response and easing of muscle tension.

Another way acupuncture has been found to be effecting for certain cases is its affect on the vagus nerve. The vagus nerve is one of the longest cranial nerves as well as having a brach that innervates the ear. By helping to decrease inflammation and functioning of the nerves can aid in the reduction of tinnitus symptoms as well as helping to reduce the stress response. 

Read Dr. Ellie’s previous post on the vagus nerve here. 

Another rationale for how acupuncture can help, is that the needle, inserted at specific points may triggers action potentials to rebalance the nervous system or the function of the olivocochlear nucleus. Often acupuncture can be that missing link for some to ease intensity of the ringing.

If you suffer from tinnitus, give our office a call today at (425) 686-4498 to schedule your initial consultation to learn more about how we can help.

Dr. Ellie Heintze, ND, LAc, is a naturopathic doctor and acupuncturist in Bothell, WA at her practice Starting Point Acupuncture. She specializes in chronic and complex cases and commonly treats neuropathy, fibromyalgia, migraines, autoimmune, and infertility cases. Dr. Ellie Heintze is also the author of the book, A Starting Point Guide to Going Gluten-Free  and Keep Calm and Zen Out available on Amazon.


Tinnitus and quality of life:

Acupuncture and otoacoustic emissions:

Call or Schedule Now! (425) 686-4498

Call or Schedule Now!

(425) 686-4498

Dr. Ellie Heintze, ND, LAc

  • Master’s Degree in Acupuncture
    Bastyr University
  • Doctorate in Naturopathic Medicine
    Bastyr University
  • Master’s Degree in Chemistry
    Northern Arizona University
Dr. Heintze Acupuncturist and Naturopathic Doctor

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