Did I Inherit my Tinnitus?

Woman grimacing with hand on the left side of her head suffering from tinnitus

Are you experiencing ringing in your ears that’s driving you crazy? Learn whether your tinnitus is inherited or what the cause might be.

What is tinnitus?

Tinnitus is the term referring to a person’s perception of a ringing, droning, or buzzing in the ear with no external stimulus present to explain this experience. The direct translation of the term tinnitus is”ringing like a bell”.”

How will my everyday living be impacted by tinnitus?

Tinnitus can be annoying and can disrupt intimate interactions. It’s not a disease in and of itself, but it’s a symptom of other ailments or conditions in your life like hearing loss or injury. You might hear tinnitus in one ear or both ears and it can hinder your ability to focus.

Regardless of how you’re experiencing tinnitus, it is always bothersome. Sleep loss, anxiety, and even depression can also be caused by tinnitus symptoms.

What causes tinnitus?

Tinnitus can be persistent or temporary. Lengthy exposure to loud sound, such as a rock concert, is typically the cause of short-term tinnitus. Tinnitus has been known to manifest with several different medical conditions.

Here are several conditions that typically go along with tinnitus:

  • Excessive earwax accumulation
  • Age-related hearing loss
  • Meniere’s Disease
  • Several medications
  • Prolonged exposure to loud sound
  • Depression or anxiety
  • Injuries that impact nerves of the ear
  • Inner ear cell damage and irritation of the delicate hairs used to conduct sound, causing random transmissions of sound to your brain
  • Trauma to the neck or head
  • Inner ear infections
  • Changes in the composition of the ear bone
  • Bruxism, more commonly known as teeth grinding stemming from temporomandibular joint problems, or TMJ disorder
  • Acoustic neuroma where a benign tumor grows on the cranial nerve going from the brain to the inner ear

Could I have inherited this ringing in my ears from my parents?

Generally, tinnitus isn’t a hereditary condition. But the symptoms can be affected by your genetics. You can, for instance, inherit a tendency for your ear bone to change. These changes are caused by irregular bone growth that can be passed down through family lines. Here are a few other conditions you might have inherited that can trigger tinnitus:

  • Being prone to inner ear infections or wax build-up
  • Predisposition to anxiety or depression
  • Certain diseases

You can’t directly inherit tinnitus, but there are conditions that become breeding grounds for tinnitus which you may have inherited.

If you have a history of tinnitus in your family, it’s really in your best interest to schedule an appointment with us so we can evaluate your hearing.

The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.