Tinnitus Specialist

Norman J. Chan, MD -  - Otolaryngologist

Norman J. Chan, MD

Otolaryngologist located in Chinatown, New York, NY

Around 10-15% of American adults experience tinnitus and report hearing loss by the time they are 18 years old. Many patients are able to ignore it, but if you are bothered by the sound and find that it’s affecting your quality of life, Norman J Chan MD in Chinatown, New York, can help. The dedicated practice evaluates your tinnitus and develops customized treatment plans to relieve your symptoms. To learn more, call the office, or use the online scheduling tool to make an appointment today.

Tinnitus Q & A

What is tinnitus?

People with tinnitus perceive a noise, even when there isn’t anything causing the sound. Tinnitus is not a disorder itself, but a symptom of other underlying causes like hearing loss. Tinnitus can include various types of phantom noises such as:

  • Ringing
  • Roaring
  • Buzzing
  • Clicking
  • Whistling
  • Hissing

The noise may be loud or soft, high- or low-pitched, and may be heard in one or both ears. In some cases, it’s so loud and constant that it can affect your ability to concentrate on other external sounds. 

Although tinnitus isn’t serious, it can significantly reduce the quality of your life. Along with hearing noises that aren’t there, people with tinnitus also experience:

  • Fatigue
  • Stress
  • Disturbed sleep
  • Memory problems
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Irritability

Tinnitus can worsen with age, so it’s important to treat it early before it begins to affect your hearing or talking.

What causes tinnitus?

Tinnitus is often associated with hearing loss. Hearing loss can result from many causes including exposure to loud noises or age-related damage to the tiny sensory hairs in the cochlea of your inner ear. 

Other common causes of tinnitus are:

  • Head or neck injury
  • Ear infection
  • Wax build-up
  • Ear structure abnormalities
  • Medication

Certain chronic illnesses that affect your blood flow like heart disease or high blood pressure can increase your risk of developing tinnitus. In some rare instances, blood vessel disorders, like malformed capillaries, can result in tinnitus. Tinnitus can also be caused by certain conditions like Meniere’s disease or non-cancerous tumors.

How do you treat tinnitus?

If your tinnitus is distracting you from everyday tasks, Norman J Chan MD can diagnose and treat your symptoms and underlying condition. 

Dr. Chan examines your ears, head, and neck and may recommend hearing exams and imaging tests, like an MRI or a CT scan, to identify or rule out the causes of your tinnitus. If your tinnitus is caused by a health issue, Dr. Chan can suggest a treatment to address this underlying cause. Treatments for tinnitus may include:

Earwax removal

Cleaning the excess wax and debris from your ears can reduce your tinnitus symptoms.

Noise suppression 

Some patients benefit from white noise devices that suppress the sound of your tinnitus with a continuous, low-level sound that is less distracting.

Changing medication

Certain medications can cause tinnitus. Dr. Chan works with you to determine if your medications are the source of your tinnitus.

If you need relief from the constant sound in your ears, call the office of Norman J Chan MD, or use the online scheduling tool to book an appointment today.