Treatment Options

Tinnitus Maskers for the Treatment of Tinnitus

Possible Harm/No Value

Tinnitus is a medical term for the perception of sound in one or both ears or in the head when no external sound is present. It is often described as “ringing in the ears.” Some individuals have described the sound as a hissing noise or whistling. Tinnitus can be constant or intermittent. 

Tinnitus maskers look like hearing aids, but they produce sound that “mask” or cover up tinnitus. The characteristics of tinnitus, such as pitch and loudness, determine what kind of noise will bring relief. Like other treatments for tinnitus, maskers are useful for some, but not everyone.

Things to Consider

  • Tinnitus is not a disease; it is a symptom that is common to many problems.
  • The American Tinnitus Association estimates that over 50 million Americans experience tinnitus to some degree.
  • Although many individuals experience tinnitus, the severity of the condition varies from person to person.

Results

Possible Harm/No Value

Will I live longer if I use a tinnitus masker?

Scientific evidence is not available to show if using a tinnitus masker will cause you to live longer.

Will use of a tinnitus masker improve my quality of life?

Long-term scientific evidence is not available to show if a tinnitus masker improves your quality of life.

Does the use of a tinnitus masker improve my symptoms?

Long-term scientific evidence is not available to show if a tinnitus masker will improve your symptoms.

Safety

Possible Harm/No Value

Much more information, including data from more individuals who have used tinnitus maskers, is needed to determine their safety.

Comparison

Possible Harm/No Value

There were no well-designed clinical studies found in the published literature that compares the use of tinnitus maskers to other alternatives.

Cost

Possible Harm/No Value

The cost of a tinnitus masker may range from $60 to $100 or more.

The cost may or may not be covered by your health benefits plan.

Sources

The following are off-site links off-site link :

American Tinnitus Association. (no date). Treatment information. Retrieved March 25, 2014 from http://www.ata.org/for-patients/treatment.

American Speech-Language-Hearing Association. (2014). Tinnitus. Retrieved March 25, 2014 from http://www.asha.org/public/hearing/tinnitus/.

Mayo Clinic. (2013, February). Tinnitus. Retrieved March 25, 2014 from http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/tinnitus/DS00365.

WebMD. (2013). Understanding Tinnitus – the basics. Retrieved March 25, 2014 from http://www.webmd.com/a-to-z-guides/understanding-tinnitus-basics.

Next Review Date

3/27/2015

This document has been classified as public information.

Table of Findings

results:  possible harm / no value

safety:  possible harm / no value

comparison:  possible harm / no value

cost: possible harm / no value


total: possible harm / no value

legend

scale

Page modified:March 31, 2014