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You may have heard that Kent Taylor, founder and CEO of the Texas Roadhouse restaurant chain, has taken his own life at age 65 after suffering from severe tinnitus.
Tinnitus, a ringing, whooshing or buzzing in the ears, is seen in military veterans, Covid survivors and accident victims. Tinnitus is not really a medical disease per se, but usually a symptom of another condition or injury. There are treatments that sometimes help, but for most sufferers there is no cure.
The International Tinnitus Journal reported in 2017 that 45% of tinnitus sufferers experience anxiety and 33% deal end up with major depression. In one study, 9% of women and 5.5% of men with severe tinnitus tried to commit suicide. Even those with even milder forms of tinnitus were also more likely to attempt to kill themselves. It is believed that the impact of tinnitus on the region of the brain responsible for suicidal thoughts is similar to what is experienced by patients suffering from chronic pain.
In my practice, I see clients with tinnitus from injuries. Heads hitting together in a roll over crash can cause it, for example. Also, severe neck pain and stiffness from a car accident can trigger it.
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Here are some of the treatments for tinnitus that maybe suggested:
- Masking devices in the ear that suppresses tinnitus symptoms.
- Physical or jaw manipulation, acupuncture or chiropractic adjustments.
- Changing your medication, treating a blood vessel condition or earwax removal.
- Hearing aids, other white noise machines or apps.
- Counseling, retraining therapy (TRT), or Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT).
- Steroids, injections or medications.
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