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

When you first notice that ringing in your ears you may have a very common response: pretend that it’s no big deal. You set about your normal routines: you have a chat with friends, go shopping, and prepare lunch. While you simultaneously try your hardest to ignore that ringing. Because you feel sure of one thing: your tinnitus will go away by itself.

After a few more days of unremitting buzzing and ringing, however, you start to have doubts.

You aren’t the only one to ever find yourself in this position. At times tinnitus stop by itself, and other times it will linger on and that’s the reason why it’s a tricky little condition.

The Condition of Temporary Tinnitus

Around the globe, almost everyone has had a bout of tinnitus because it’s very common. Tinnitus is a temporary condition, in most instances, and will ultimately subside on its own. The most typical scenario is the rock concert: 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 kind of tinnitus connected to injury from loud noise will usually fade away (but you accept that it’s simply part of going to a loud show).

Of course, it’s precisely this type of noise injury that, over time, can cause loss of hearing to move from temporary (or acute, as they say) to chronic. Too many of those types of concerts and you might wind up with permanent tinnitus.

When Tinnitus Doesn’t Seem to be Disappearing by Itself

If your tinnitus doesn’t subside (with help or on its own) within the period of three months or so, the ailment is then classified chronic tinnitus (this does not, by the way, imply that you should wait that long to speak to an expert about lingering thumping, buzzing, or ringing in your ears).

Something like 5-15% of individuals around the world have reported signs of chronic tinnitus. The exact causes of tinnitus are still not well known although there are some known connections (like loss of hearing).

When the causes of your tinnitus aren’t obvious, it often means that a quick “cure” will be elusive. If your ears have been ringing for more than three months and there’s no discernible cause, there’s a strong possibility that the sound will not recede by itself. But if this is your circumstance, you can safeguard your quality of life and manage your symptoms with some treatment options (like noise canceling devices and cognitive behavioral therapy).

The Reason For Your Tinnitus is Relevant

It becomes much easier to decrease the symptoms of tinnitus when you are able to determine the root causes. For instance, if your tinnitus is created by a stubborn, bacterial ear infection, treatment with an antibiotic will usually solve both problems, resulting in a healthy ear and crystal-clear hearing.

Here are some potential causes of acute tinnitus:

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

So…Will The Ringing in My Ears Go Away?

In general, your tinnitus will recede on its own. But it becomes increasingly more likely that you’re dealing with chronic tinnitus the longer these tinnitus sounds linger.

You feel that if you simply disregard it should go away by itself. But there could come a point where your tinnitus starts to become uncomfortable, where it’s hard to concentrate because the sound is too distracting. And in those instances, you may want a treatment strategy more thorough than crossing your fingers.

Most of the time tinnitus is just the body’s reaction to loud noise that could be damaging over time and will recede on its own. Only time will tell if your tinnitus is acute or chronic.

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