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## Does Scuba Diving Make Tinnitus Worse?

Tinnitus is a common condition that causes a ringing, buzzing, or hissing sound in the ears. It can be caused by a variety of factors, including exposure to loud noise, certain medications, and medical conditions. Scuba diving is one activity that has been linked to tinnitus, but the exact relationship between the two is not fully understood.

### How Does Scuba Diving Affect the Ears?

When you dive underwater, the pressure on your ears increases. This can cause the eustachian tubes, which connect the middle ear to the back of the throat, to become blocked. This can lead to a feeling of fullness in the ears, as well as pain and hearing loss.

In some cases, the increased pressure can also damage the delicate structures of the inner ear. This can lead to tinnitus, as well as other hearing problems.

### Risk Factors for Tinnitus from Scuba Diving

The risk of developing tinnitus from scuba diving is increased if you:

* Are a frequent diver
* Dive deep
* Dive for long periods of time
* Have a history of ear problems
* Are exposed to other loud noises, such as gunfire or construction work

### Symptoms of Tinnitus

The symptoms of tinnitus can vary from person to person. Some people may experience a constant ringing, buzzing, or hissing sound. Others may only experience the sound occasionally. The sound may be loud or soft, and it may come and go.

Other symptoms of tinnitus can include:

* Difficulty hearing
* Ear pain
* Dizziness
* Fatigue
* Anxiety
* Depression

### Treatment for Tinnitus

There is no cure for tinnitus, but there are a number of treatments that can help to reduce the symptoms. These treatments include:

* Sound therapy: This involves listening to white noise or other sounds that can help to mask the tinnitus.
* Tinnitus retraining therapy: This is a type of counseling that can help you to learn to ignore the tinnitus.
* Medication: Some medications, such as antidepressants and anti-anxiety medications, can help to reduce the symptoms of tinnitus.

### Prevention of Tinnitus from Scuba Diving

There are a number of things you can do to help prevent tinnitus from scuba diving, including:

* Equalize your ears frequently: This involves swallowing or yawning to open the eustachian tubes and equalize the pressure in your ears.
* Avoid diving too deep or for too long: The deeper you dive and the longer you stay underwater, the greater the risk of developing tinnitus.
* Take breaks from diving: If you experience any ear pain or fullness, take a break from diving and give your ears a chance to recover.
* See a doctor if you have any ear problems: If you have any ear pain, discharge, or hearing loss, see a doctor as soon as possible.

### Conclusion

Scuba diving is a great way to explore the underwater world, but it is important to be aware of the potential risks to your hearing. By taking the necessary precautions, you can help to reduce your risk of developing tinnitus from scuba diving.

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