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The Best Tinnitus Products

Which Products Deliver the Best Tinnitus Relief?

Millions of people suffer from annoying, persistent ringing or hissing in their ears - so if you're one of them, you're not alone. Tinnitus is a condition that causes a person to hear a sound in their ears even when there is no external sound present. The sound may be a ringing, buzzing, or other type of noise, and it can vary in pitch and intensity. Tinnitus can be caused by a variety of factors, including exposure to loud noises, ear infections, and certain medications

People who suffer from this condition are often desperate to find relief. While people can choose from over the counter options and prescription medications, many patients feel like the results aren't worth the cost, or worse, they experience side effects that are more irritating than the Tinnitus itself.

Wednesday, May 29th

2024 Tinnitus Product Reviews

Top Consumer Reviews Best-In-Class Blue Ribbon Award Lipo-Flavonoid Plus Review 5 Star Rating

Lipo-Flavonoid Plus

5 Star Rating
  • $26.99 for a 150-caplet bottle (25-day supply)
  • 100% refund if you don't get relief when used as directed for 60 days
  • Ingredients include a blend of vitamins and minerals, plus a proprietary blend of choline bitartrate and inositol lemon bioflavonoid complex
  • Highly recommended by ENTs for tinnitus and Meniere's syndrome
Top Consumer Reviews Best-In-Class Blue Ribbon Award

Lipo-Flavonoid Plus is based on over 60 years of clinical experience, using lemon bioflavonoids to fight both tinnitus and Meniere's syndrome (which can also cause ringing in the ears). In independent studies conducted in both 2010 and 2018, 77% of ENTs surveyed said that they recommend nutritional supplements for addressing ringing in the ears and similar symptoms, and Lipo-Flavonoid Plus is the brand they prefer.

Lemon bioflavonoids combined with vitamins and minerals

In addition to the lemon bioflavonoids, this tinnitus product offers a powerful blend of vitamins and minerals. These ingredients offer nutritional support that benefits the function of the inner ear. These include:

  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin B1, B2, B6, B 12
  • Calcium
  • Niacin
  • Pantothenic Acid

Nighttime formula

You may be interested in the nighttime formula of Lipo-Flavonoid, especially if your tinnitus is getting in the way of a good night's sleep. It incorporates melatonin along with the other ingredients in the regular formula. The company also offers a SleepTones sound machine to help you mask the ringing in your ears (but you could possibly get the same effects through your cell phone).

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Get your money back if you try for 60 days

We love that Lipo-Flavonoid Plus comes with a 100% refund policy. It stipulates that you use the caplets as directed - namely, two caplets three times per day for at least 60 days - and if you don't get symptom relief, they'll give you your money back. At a price point of $26.99 for 150 caplets, you'll have to buy three bottles to meet that requirement - in other words, laying out just over $80 to buy that 60+ days' supply. But, the refund policy makes it so that it's risk-free to give it a try, and we're all for that.

Effective for thousands of users

There are thousands of people who say that this is the only tinnitus relief product that works for them, with over 3,000 five-star reviews, representing nearly 50% of all ratings. Take a look at what others have said and be encouraged: one person said that Lipo-Flavonoid Plus decreased the ringing in their ears by nearly 80% - the only relief they've experienced in over eight years. You'll also find some user tips, like taking a dose on an empty stomach if you're not seeing a difference using it as directed with a meal. No, it's not a silver bullet: you'll still see around 20% of people who say they didn't get relief from their tinnitus symptoms with this remedy. But, the odds are definitely in your favor here.

#1 among tinnitus products

Lipo-Flavonoid Plus earns our highest recommendation for tinnitus relief. It's a fantastic option if you need to avoid the plethora of herbal ingredients often included in over-the-counter remedies, or if you simply feel more comfortable going with a product that's been researched and used for several decades. And, as long as you're willing to invest in that initial 60-day supply, you're protected by the product's refund policy. Lipo-Flavonoid Plus could be the tinnitus solution you've been hoping for.

TinnaRex Review 4.5 Star Rating

TinnaRex

4.5 Star Rating
  • $39.95 for 2 fl.oz. (approximately 80 days' supply)
  • Available as a Buy 2 Get 1 Free product (can combine with other remedies)
  • One-year money-back guarantee
  • "A+" rated and accredited by the BBB
  • In business for over 90 years

Native Remedies is our go-to store when we want to find an all-natural herbal supplement for just about any condition. The company has a long history that spans decades, and an excellent track record for customer support and satisfaction.

5 herbal ingredients

This store's tinnitus remedy is called TinnaRex. Unlike many herbal products we evaluated, this one very carefully describes each ingredient and how it works to help you feel better:

  • St. John's Wort: helps support a balanced nervous system. You may have seen it used in supplements designed to fight depression and other mood issues.
  • Ginkgo Leaf: used in traditional Chinese medicine for centuries, this plant helps the circulatory system and is featured in many tinnitus products.
  • Rosemary: not just for flavoring food, this plant helps you have healthy, strong blood vessels. You may also feel mood-balancing impacts and renewed energy.
  • Oatstraw: also good for circulation, this plant is used as a restorative and nerve tonic.
  • European Blue Vervain: relieves tension and stress, promotes balance and harmony in the nervous system

Do not take this with anticoagulants

One contraindication of TinnaRex is the use of anticoagulants. If you're currently taking Warfarin or any other such medication, you shouldn't use this tinnitus remedy.

80 days' supply for under $40

TinnaRex is recommended for use in adults and children ages 10+. You simply drop 0.5 mL of the tincture in one-fourth cup of water, three times a day. At that dosage rate, one bottle should last you approximately 80 days. At a price of $39.95, that's an incredible value.

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Lots of ways to save

Native Remedies can save you even more money. Most products can be set up as an auto-ship every 4-12 weeks, depending on the timeframe you select, and that gets you a 15% discount. Plus, most products they sell are eligible for the Buy 2 Get 1 Free promotion: you could stock up on TinnaRex and get three for the price of two, or you could add in Ear-Heal-S for Ear Health Support, VertiFree if you've also got vertigo, or CalmSteady to manage your stress. Those are all recommended companion products to TinnaRex, but you'll find many unrelated health issues that can be addressed by Native Remedies' supplements that you might like to try too.

More customer feedback, please?

TinnaRex comes up a little short in the reviews department. Although the product listing shows 16 customer ratings averaging about 3.5/5 stars, clicking to read them took us to a part of the page that was mysteriously blank. We'd really like to be able to see what users say about their experience with TinnaRex, especially since the ratings average would indicate that it works for some but not for others.

Fantastic company

That being said, you might be wondering why this tinnitus relief product earns one of our highest rankings. It comes down to Native Remedies' reputation for customer support and service. The company has an "A+" rating and accreditation from the Better Business Bureau, which is almost unheard of in the tinnitus relief industry. And, a big part of that is their satisfaction guarantee, which is also unparalleled: if you try TinnaRex for at least 30 days, you'll have up to a year to request a full refund. That goes for any of their other products as well.

Give it a try, risk-free

Will TinnaRex work for you? Maybe, maybe not. But, you can rest assured that you'll have plenty of time to give it a chance, with no problems getting all of your money back if it doesn't. That alone makes this tinnitus product one of our favorites, and we encourage you to try it too.

TinniFree Review 3.5 Star Rating

TinniFree

3.5 Star Rating
  • $34.95 for a 60-count bottle (15-30 days' supply)
  • Synergistic blend of 23 clinically-studied ingredients
  • 60-day money-back guarantee
  • In business since 2004

In business since 2004, New York-based Vita Sciences is dedicated to producing top-notch nutraceutical products. The company offers a wide range of remedies, including TinniFree for tinnitus relief.

23 vitamins, minerals, and herbal extracts

At its core, TinniFree is a vitamin supplement combined with herbal extracts. There are more than 23 ingredients in this tinnitus product, ranging from vitamins and minerals (A, B12, magnesium, copper, selenium) to plant-based components (ginkgo biloba, garlic, pine bark, and black pepper). We strongly recommend that you read the ingredients list carefully before taking TinniFree, especially if you are already using a multivitamin or any other supplements: you don't want to duplicate ingredients or overdose.

Double the dosage in the first three months

TinniFree is one of the most expensive tinnitus products in our review. It might not seem so at first: the dosage instructions say that it's a 2-capsule, once-daily regimen. But, when you read the details, you'll see that you're actually supposed to take two capsules twice daily for the first three months. With just 60 capsules per bottle, you'll only get 15 days' worth at that increased dosage. Do the math, and you'll realize it's going to cost you almost $70 per month for that initial timeframe.

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Mixed results

The jury is out when it comes to the effectiveness of TinniFree. If you look at the manufacturer's posted reviews, they're almost all a perfect five stars - but you can't read them, so you're taking their word for it. Vita Sciences posts a few "happy faces" with testimonials (with stock photos standing in for actual customers), but that's about it. However, when you look at customer feedback on third-party retailer sites that carry this supplement, it's not nearly that enthusiastic. You'll still find some who say that this remedy gets the job done, but there are a fair number who say that TinniFree didn't even take the edge off their symptoms.

60 days to get your money back

The good news is that Vita Sciences offers a 60-day money-back guarantee on everything they sell. If TinniFree winds up being a disappointment, just send the company an email to request a refund.

Good but not great

We rank TinniFree just a little above average compared with other tinnitus options. While the satisfaction guarantee is a big mark in its favor, the increased dosage over the first three months and the limited evidence of its effectiveness keep TinniFree from earning our highest rating. Still, if you like the idea of multivitamin support in combination with herbal ingredients frequently found in tinnitus remedies, TinniFree could be worth a look.

Arches Tinnitus Formula Review 3.5 Star Rating

Arches Tinnitus Formula

3.5 Star Rating
  • $39.95 for 100 capsules (25-day supply)
  • Ingredients limited to just zinc, deodorized garlic, and ginkgo biloba
  • Return policy limited to unopened bottles of product (90 days)
  • In business for over 20 years

If you're looking for a tinnitus product with a simplified ingredients list, Arches Tinnitus Formula might be a good place to start. Arches Natural Products has been in business for over two decades, so you don't have to be worried that this is yet another fly-by-night remedy that just barely hit the market.

Just 3 ingredients

This relief remedy utilizes just 3 ingredients - zinc, deodorized garlic, and ginkgo biloba. These same elements are often included in rival supplements - that also have a dozen or more other active ingredients.

More than $40/month

Because you're supposed to take two capsules twice a day, Arches Tinnitus Formula is more expensive than many of the relief products we evaluated. You'll pay $39.95 for a 100-capsule bottle, which only winds up being a 25-day supply.

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No satisfaction guarantee

Plus, Arches says that it will take anywhere from 70-90 days to get measurable results from its Tinnitus Formula. With no refund policy or satisfaction guarantee on opened bottles of product, that makes this remedy even more expensive to put to the test: 3-4 bottles will be required to cover that timeframe.

Might work for you

However, some customers report getting relief when using Tinnitus Formula as directed. One surgeon said that 75-80% of his patients using Arches Tinnitus Formula for hearing loss found it to be effective. Those numbers climb even more for people who have successfully combined their use of the Arches product with other medications and supplements (gabapentin via prescription or MSM) as recommended by a physician.

Decent but costly choice for some customers

Arches Tinnitus Formula could be the right fit for some patients. If you'd like to try just a small number of ingredients to address your symptoms, in order to reduce the risk of an allergic reaction or other problems, this product will rise to the top of your list. We like that the remedy is offered by a company that has been around for a while, and that there's a track record of improvement in some patients. But, because there's no satisfaction guarantee, you'll easily spend over $100 just to see if Arches Tinnitus Formula works for you. That keeps this tinnitus relief product in our "just above average" category.

Ring Free Review 3 Star Rating

Ring Free

3 Star Rating
  • $49.99 for 60 capsules (1-2 months' supply)
  • May get results within a week
  • 30-day refund policy
  • Made in the USA

Ring Free is a made-in-the-USA tinnitus supplement taken in capsule form. While customers generally report positive results, tracking down the manufacturer is another story.

List of ingredients

What's in it? The supplement contains a blend of the following ingredients:

  • Vitamin B6
  • Chloride
  • Potassium
  • Dandelion Leaf
  • Green Tea Leaf
  • Cranberry Fruit Powder
  • Juniper Berry
  • Buchu Leaf
  • Apple Cider Vinegar
  • Corn Silk Powder
  • Paprika Powder
  • Watermelon Powder

More details would be helpful

While the company doesn't go into detail regarding how each ingredient works, they say that the supplement lubricates the bones within the ear. Most of Ring Free's components are also found in other tinnitus remedies, so even though we'd like to see more explanations in this product's description, we can be relatively reassured that there isn't anything included that's off-the-wall or dangerous.

$50 or less per month

Ring Free is meant to be taken once or twice daily as needed, ideally with a meal. Each bottle contains 60 capsules, so that could last you a month or two. Priced at $49.99 per bottle, this tinnitus remedy falls right in the middle of the products we evaluated.

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Who's behind this product, anyway?

Ring Free's manufacturer hasn't gotten any easier to track down since our last evaluation. The address on the bottle still leads to a residential condo in Florida. And this time, we couldn't find any business listing for Advanced Therapeutics Labs. Poking around in the product listing, we found another manufacturer/ business name: SOS Labs LLC, also located in Florida. Who are they? Are they trustworthy? Are they now manufacturing, distributing, and, most importantly, backing the Ring Free product? Those are all great questions and we came up empty when searching for answers.

Works well for quite a few users

Still, we can't completely ignore the fact that Ring Free gets results for some users: over 50% of reviewers give this supplement four or five stars. Among those who say that they saw improvements in their tinnitus symptoms, many commented that it only took a week or two to notice a change. There's no one tinnitus relief product that's going to work for every single patient, so we're encouraged by the fact that Ring Free actually improves some customers' lives. And, assuming you can figure out who to ask, you could take advantage of this supplement's 30-day refund policy if it doesn't make a difference in your tinnitus symptoms.

Good as a backup plan

We're keeping Ring Free at a middle-of-the-road rating. We're not happy that the company - SOS Labs? Advanced Therapeutics? - is so hard to identify and contact. But, with a solid number of recent reviews from customers who said they used Ring Free and got at least some results, this tinnitus option could still be worth a go if you haven't found relief elsewhere.

Tranquil Ear Review 2 Star Rating

Tranquil Ear

2 Star Rating
  • $22.49 for a 30-day supply
  • All-natural tinnitus relief product
  • Two formulas: daytime and nighttime (recommended to take both)
  • Formulated by board certified ear surgeons
  • 100% satisfaction guarantee

Tranquil Ear was developed by two board-certified ear surgeons with decades of experience. Through their company, MD Nutraceuticals, they aimed to create "an effective, natural, safe, and science-based healthy supplement suitable for men and women" .

Different formulas for day and night

MD Nutraceuticals offers two products for tinnitus, one for use during the day and one for nighttime. Each one is taken in a one-capsule-daily regimen; while you don't have to use both formulas, the company recommends taking them in conjunction for best results. Here's what you can expect in the ingredients list for each one:

  • Daytime Formula:
    • Vitamin B-12
    • Zinc
    • Asian Ginseng
    • Rosemary Leaf Powder
    • Eleuthero Leaf Powder
    • Taurine
    • GABA
    • Ginkgo Leaf
  • Nighttime Formula:
    • Magnesium
    • Melatonin
    • Valerian Root
    • Passionflower
    • Ashwagandha
    • Proprietary blend of Taurine, GABA, and Ginkgo Leaf

Obviously, if you're taking any other form of sleep aid (like melatonin), you should check with your physician before using the PM formula of Tranquil Ear.

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Not the most promising product

Unfortunately, neither the daytime nor the nighttime formulation earn rave reviews from users: out of nearly 200 ratings, the two products average a somewhat disappointing 3- and 3.4-out-of-5 stars, respectively. While a small number of people might see an improvement in their tinnitus symptoms when using Tranquil Ear supplements, the vast majority use phrases like "waste of money" and "ineffective even at double the recommended dosage" to describe their experience. One patient even said that they experienced month-long diarrhea while taking this supplement. Ouch.

100% satisfaction guarantee - sort of

You might be able to get a refund if you also try Tranquil Ear and don't notice any improvements. At least on the PM formula, the company states that if you aren't 100% satisfied, you can send it back for a full refund. However, they stop short of telling you what timeframe applies (30 days? Six months?) or if you can use up the entire bottle - or several - and still get all of your money back.

Better tinnitus products are out there

Although we love all-natural products as much as the next person, we can't get behind Tranquil Ear's products. There's just not enough evidence that it provides relief to people desperate to cure (or at least minimize) their tinnitus. And, without a ton of company information or a well-defined return policy, both the Daytime and Nighttime formulas wind up near the bottom of our list. We recommend trying one of the higher-ranked tinnitus relief options in our review instead.

Tinnitus 911 Review 1.5 Star Rating

Tinnitus 911

1.5 Star Rating
  • $62.96 for a 60-capsule bottle
  • Ingredients include Vitamins C/B6/B12, niacin, folic acid, garlic, olive leaf, juniper berry, green tea, hibiscus, and buchu leaves
  • May have a refund policy, depending on where you purchase

Phytage Labs offers Tinnitus 911 as an all-natural means of soothing your nervous system, optimizing your mind, and putting an end to "those irritating ear noises" .

How much do you actually need?

The active ingredients in Tinnitus 911 include Vitamin C, Vitamin B6 and B12, niacin, folic acid, garlic, olive leaf, juniper berry, green tea, hibiscus, and buchu leaves. But, the directions vary: in one place in the product listing, it says to take two capsules per day (so a 60-capsule bottle lasts a month). In another, it says to take just one per day with a meal.

No info on how the ingredients help

Phytage Labs' listing for their tinnitus relief product also doesn't tell you how any of those ingredients should be expected to work in your body: could you get the same effect from upping your intake of garlic in food and drinking more green tea?

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Reputation is still lacking

That really doesn't matter, considering that Tinnitus 911 absolutely falls flat when it comes to reputation. Although their parent company's grade with the Better Business Bureau has improved since our last evaluation, from a "C" to a "B-" , the BBB still takes issue with Phytage Labs for having 29 complaints and a "failure to be transparent about ownership, location, or products/services offered" . That's not exactly reassuring when you're talking about a product you're ingesting.

Disappointing reviews

It doesn't get any better when you read customer reviews and comments. Over more than 1,700 ratings, the same percentage of users give this tinnitus product a 1-star rating as the ones who give it five stars (34% each). Oddly enough, the 2- and 4-star ratings also hit the same percentages (9% each), with 14% in the middle with three stars. Shoppers complained that it didn't work - and then when it was time to get a refund, they were out of luck when reaching out to Phytage Labs directly: phone calls and emails went completely unanswered. You might get your money back if you purchase Tinnitus 911 from a third-party retailer, but do you really want to bother? We wouldn't, when over 50% of customers give the product three stars or fewer.

Don't bother with this tinnitus product

Tinnitus 911 is expensive, and if customer feedback is any indicator, it's ineffective for reducing tinnitus. Plus, with sketchy details on how to take the product, few explanations for how it works, and reported difficulties in reaching anyone at Phytage Labs, this remedy is better left untried. Choose your tinnitus relief product from among the higher-rated businesses in our review.

Tinnitus Patch Review 0.5 Star Rating

Tinnitus Patch

0.5 Star Rating
  • $25.87 for 24 patches

At first glance, you might be excited by Tinnitus Patch: no pills or anything else to swallow, and almost 100% five-star ratings from customers. Amazing, right? Read on to discover why this tinnitus relief product is actually at the bottom of our rankings.

Patches sound promising

Tinnitus Patch as a concept is promising. The product is described as 100% natural, using plant extracts to reduce ringing, clicking, and buzzing in the ears. The patch is applied under the ear for long-lasting relief. If you've ever gagged while trying to take a huge pill or a foul-tasting tincture, a patch probably sounds perfect.

Lots of five-star ratings - or not?

And, if you just look at the star rating at the top of the product page, Tinnitus Patch sounds like a can't-lose: almost 500 ratings, the overwhelming majority of which give it five stars. But, that's where things start to go sideways.

Reviews talk about allergy medication??

When you start reading through the reviews, almost every single one of them makes reference to an allergy medication. Okay, maybe there's something that works for allergies AND tinnitus? Apparently not: searching through the reviews, not a single one talked about tinnitus or its related symptoms.

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No ingredient information that corresponds to the product

Plus, Tinnitus Patch is described as an all-herbal remedy. On the other hand, the customer reviews associated with the product mention Fexofenadine HCL - the generic equivalent of the popular allergy medication, Allegra. What, exactly, is in the Tinnitus Patch, then? Fantastic question, because Fexofenadine HCL is definitely not an all-natural ingredient. The product images aren't any help either: instead of showing an information label like most tinnitus relief products, they only offer photos of people who presumably suffer from the condition. Okay then.

Confusing product catalog

Tinnitus Patch is offered in the HOPESO Store. Clicking over to see what else is offered, in the hopes of getting even the slightest bit of information about this remedy, all we spotted was an odd assortment of products that included a silicone back scrubber for use in the shower and a handful of equally-nondescript supplements.

Don't waste your time

Unfortunately, if you're looking for a patch that can deliver tinnitus relief, you're going to have to keep searching. Tinnitus Patch can't even tell you what exactly is in it, and the glowing customer reviews are quite obviously for some other product. We have no choice but to give this product our lowest rating.

Compare the Best Reviews

Continued from above...

If you are experiencing tinnitus, it is important to talk to your doctor about potential options. They can help you determine the cause of your tinnitus and recommend the best course of action to help you manage your symptoms. How you deal with tinnitus can vary depending on the underlying cause. Some potential options include:

  • Avoiding loud noises or using earplugs to protect your hearing
  • Managing underlying health conditions, such as high blood pressure or diabetes
  • Using hearing aids or other assistive devices to amplify external sounds and reduce the perception of tinnitus
  • Undergoing cognitive behavioral therapy or other forms of counseling to help you manage the psychological effects of tinnitus

You may also be interested in trying supplements that may help reduce the symptoms of tinnitus. Many over-the-counter remedies include magnesium, which plays a role in regulating the inner ear, and some research suggests that low levels of magnesium may be linked to tinnitus. Ginkgo biloba is another popular component of tinnitus remedies: this herb has been used for centuries to deal with a range of health conditions, including tinnitus. Some studies suggest that it may improve blood flow to the inner ear and reduce tinnitus symptoms.

Which tinnitus relief option is best for you? As with any product, your results may vary with anything you try. But, here are some factors that might influence your decision:

  • Pill, patch, or drops? Do you have a strong preference for (or aversion to) any particular delivery mechanism? In other words, do you hate swallowing capsules? Look for patches you wear or tinctures you drop under the tongue or mix with liquids.
  • Price. How much are you looking to spend? Most tinnitus relief products cost around $30 for a one-month supply, but a few will run you at least double that amount.
  • Effectiveness. What do other tinnitus sufferers say about their experience with the product? How long did they have to use it before noticing a change?
  • Refund policy. The best makers of tinnitus relief products want you to feel comfortable giving them a try, so it's not uncommon to find a 100% satisfaction guarantee that lets you see for yourself. Just watch for the time limit: some only give you 30 days, while others will give you several months or more.

To help you minimize or even completely eliminate that annoying ringing in your ears, Top Consumer Reviews has evaluated and ranked the most popular over-the-counter products for tinnitus. We hope this information makes it easy to find the right product to get relief once and for all.

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Tinnitus Product FAQ

Tinnitus is a sensation of roaring, buzzing, hissing or ringing in your ears - with no external source. It can be constant or intermittent and may be exacerbated by stress, anxiety, or fatigue.
There can be many causes of tinnitus. It may be as simple as a buildup of wax in the ear or as complicated as a medical condition like Meniere's disease. Loud sounds can cause both tinnitus and hearing loss, especially with long-term exposure.
In the US alone, almost 50 million people experience tinnitus in a given year, with 20% of those cases being severe enough that the patients seek medical attention. That percentage increases sharply among people in careers that regularly expose them to loud noises, such as musicians, airport ground staff, and construction workers.
For some people, tinnitus goes away on its own. Unfortunately, for many people with tinnitus, something else is required. This can involve working with an audiologist or using an over-the-counter product to try and manage the symptoms.
Yes. These products usually consist of an herbal blend of ingredients to help calm your nerves and soothe your symptoms. While it's still recommended that you consult with your physician, an OTC tinnitus remedy can offer some relief while you determine the cause of your problem and the best long-term approach.
No. You'll pay $40-$60 for a one-month supply, depending on the remedy you select.
Yes, most of the time. Some manufacturers of tinnitus relief products will let you use them for up to a year and you can request a refund if you don't see improvement.
Yes. They're typically a blend of vitamins, minerals and herbal ingredients that have been safely used for many years. Of course, it's always wise to review each product's formula and make sure that there are no components that are contraindicated due to allergies or other medications you may be taking.

What is Tinnitus?

Tinnitus is most easily described as "ringing in the ears." The word is of Latin origin, meaning "to ring or tinkle like a bell." More specifically, tinnitus is the perception of sound in the ear when there is no external source present. Even though called ringing in the ears, there are many sounds someone suffering from tinnitus might hear, including whistling, buzzing, whooshing, clicking, hissing, squealing, roaring, murmuring (like someone talking in a low voice) and more. In ancient times people who had this condition were thought to be possessed by the devil or evil spirits and were often tortured in order to drive the spirits away. Even in modern times medical professionals thought it was all in the patient's head and they were losing their minds. In and of itself, tinnitus is not a disease. It is like pain - a signal that something has gone wrong somewhere.

An estimated 50 million Americans experience tinnitus. For 12 million of those 50 million, the tinnitus is persistent and very often troubling. The noise is steady and unchanging every waking minute. For most though, it is a sound that comes and goes, or a tone that changes pitch throughout the day. Some experience tinnitus that is "on" for a few days and then "off" for one. For many it can be just a brief tone heard in the quiet of night right before bed, or perhaps heard for an hour after going to a concert without earplugs.

There are two basic types of Tinnitus. Objective and Subjective. The most common type is subjective. Individuals with subjective tinnitus are the only ones that can hear the sound in their ears. With objective tinnitus the sound the individual hears can be heard by others around them and can be recorded using a sensitive microscope.

Not normally a dangerous or serious problem, tinnitus is usually a symptom of some other underlying condition and most often considered a nuisance. Often tinnitus improves when the underlying cause is dealt with. Rarely does it progress into a serious problem, but the condition is linked to fatigue, sleep problems, memory problems, stress, depression, concentration difficulty and anxiety. Though it is not considered serious, it seriously affects the quality of life of those individuals who are suffering from it. It can be very frustrating since people around them do not hear the sounds and are not empathetic towards them. Many tinnitus sufferers never get a moment of silence or peace, no matter where they go or what they do, the sounds are constant.

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