Most people have experienced a ringing in
their ears at one time or another. It′s a condition called tinnitus , and the
number of people suffering from it in Korea is on the rise.
If the ringing is temporary, it′s usually not an issue, but if it′s constant, it can
be unbearable and could signal a bigger, underlying problem.
Sohn Jung-in reports. A year ago, Heo Yoo-ri started to hear a loud
beeping sound in her left ear, ringing for 20 seconds and sometimes occurring as often
as five to six times a day. The event coincided with a time when she was
undergoing a major shift in her responsibilities at the office, which caused her a lot of stress
and sometimes resulted in insomnia.
"I hear the ringing sound as loud as the hum
of a refrigerator motor, and it bothers me during the day."
Tinnitus is a condition in which people "hear" constant or periodic sounds.
It′s not caused by an outside source but a perception of sound in their head,… and
it can appear more frequently in people who are experiencing fatigue or stress.
The number of people in Korea suffering from the condition has risen by 16 percent from
five years ago. Almost everyone has had a form of soft ringing
in their ears, heard for a few seconds. But if the problem persists, and the sound
is heard constantly in only one ear and affects your ability to perform the normal activities
of daily life, it could indicate a more serious problem.
"Nearly 90 percent of people with sudden deafness found it was accompanied by a ringing in their
ears. Many patients will go to the hospital for the ringing, and later, will experience
hearing loss." Because tinnitus could be a sign of a serious
condition, doctors say it is important to identify the underlying cause.
There is currently no cure, but one way to prevent tinnitus is to avoid loud noises,
salty food or excessive consumption of alcohol or caffeine.
Sohn Jung-in, Arirang News.