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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 might have a very typical response: pretend everything’s ok. You go about your normal routines: you do your shopping, you cook dinner, you try to have a discussion with your partner. All the while, you’re trying to push that ringing in your ear to the back of your mind. Because there is one thing you feel sure about: your tinnitus will fade away on its own.

You start to worry, though, when after a couple of days the buzzing and ringing is unrelenting.

This situation happens to other people as well. At times tinnitus will go away on its own, and at other times it will linger on and that’s why it’s a challenging little disorder.

When Tinnitus is Likely to Vanish on Its Own

Around the globe, nearly everybody has had a bout of tinnitus because it’s quite common. In almost all circumstances, tinnitus is basically temporary and will eventually go away on its own. A rock concert is a good example: you go to your local stadium to see your favorite band and you discover, when you get back home, that there is a ringing in your ears.

The kind of tinnitus that is linked to temporary injury from loud noise will usually diminish within a few days (but you realize that it’s just part of going to a loud show).

Naturally, it’s precisely this type of noise damage that, over time, can cause loss of hearing to move from temporary (or acute, as they say) to chronic. One concert too many and you may be waiting a long, long time for your tinnitus to go away on its own.

Often Times, Tinnitus Doesn’t Just Disappear

If your tinnitus lingers for over three months it’s then classified as chronic tinnitus (but you should get it examined by an expert long before that).

Something like 5-15% of people globally have documented symptoms of chronic tinnitus. While there are some known close associations (such as loss of hearing, for example), the causes of tinnitus aren’t yet very well comprehended.

When the triggers of your tinnitus aren’t clear, it normally means that a quick “cure” will be unidentifiable. There is a strong possibility that your tinnitus won’t disappear by itself if you have been hearing the ringing for over three months. But if this is your circumstance, you can preserve your quality of life and deal with your symptoms with some treatment options (like noise canceling devices and cognitive behavioral therapy).

It’s Relevant to Know What The Cause of Your Tinnitus is

When you can recognize the root cause of your tinnitus, mitigating the condition quickly becomes a lot easier. If a bacterial ear infection is, for example, the cause of your tinnitus, you can regain a healthy ear and clear hearing by managing it with antibiotics.

Some causes of acute tinnitus could include:

  • A blockage in the ear or ear canal
  • Damage to the eardrum (such as a perforated eardrum)
  • Chronic ear infections
  • Loss of hearing (again, this is often associated with chronic tinnitus)
  • Meniere’s disease (this usually has no cure and is often associated with chronic tinnitus)

The Big Question…Will my Tinnitus Ever Subside?

In general, your tinnitus will subside by itself. But it becomes increasingly more likely that you’re coping with chronic tinnitus the longer these noises linger.

You think that if you just disregard it should disappear by itself. But there may come a point where your tinnitus begins to become uncomfortable, where it’s difficult to concentrate because the sound is too disruptive. And in those situations, you might want a treatment plan more comprehensive than crossing your fingers.

In most cases, though, as a matter of fact, throughout most of your life, your tinnitus will normally subside on its own, a normal reaction to a loud environment (and your body’s way of letting you know to avoid that environment in the future). Whether that’s chronic or acute tinnitus, well, only time will tell.