Tinnitus is a painful auditory condition that comes about by exposing the ear to loud music, damaging the hair cells in the ears and not doing any good for someone trying to improve listening skills. Tinnitus treatment is quite limited and many sufferers have to endure its persistently unpleasant effects.
Affecting millions of people around the world, some prominent celebrities battle with what can be a very frustrating inconvenience, especially for musicians. One such performer is Chris Martin, the lead singer of Coldplay. Not too long ago he announced that he has lived with tinnitus for over a decade and no treatment has changed the fact that it still affects him.
Now scientists have uncovered that a specific part of the brain may well be valuable in understanding – and developing new treatment for – tinnitus. Donald Caspary, a professor of pharmacology at Southern Illinois University School of Medicine mentioned how their research department is focusing on the properties of a chemical in the brain called GABA.
The University received a $942 500 grant from the federal government and hopefully the treatment of tinnitus can be improved through the three-year grant from the Office of Navel Research will enable SIU to extensively research the elements of the auditory thalamus that they believe may be instrumental in the future treatment of tinnitus.
The onset of tinnitus is mainly due to constant exposure to very loud noise and often manifests in a painful ringing and buzzing around the inner ear, rendering it one of the worst hearing problems in adults and children alike. Tinnitus is one of the most common disabilities that Afghanistan and Iraq war veterans suffer from after service. Just another reason why the investment in tinnitus treatment research is essential to the well being of so many people.