Chinese Medical Perspectives on Tinnitus

Let’s talk about about tinnitus a bit. Affecting one out of every 20 Americans, tinnitus (the Latin word for ringing) is a condition that causes unwelcome noises in the ears such as buzzing, clicking, whistling, or high-pitched ringing sounds. It can happen to anyone, regardless of age, although its occurrence increases with age. Some speculate that usage of cell phones may have contributed to the rise of tinnitus.

tinnitusTinnitus is almost always associated with hearing loss. The sounds may be intermittent, continuous, or pulsing. It may interfere with normal activities, tend to get worse during the evenings and night. Causes of tinnitus include a degenerative auditory nerve, ear infections, neurological problems, sensorineural hearing loss, and Meniere’s disease. Some prescription medications and chemotherapy can also cause tinnitus. Well, that’s what western medicine says about tinnitus.

Chinese medicine, on the other hand, says that tinnitus (or any other hearing issues) is caused by:

  1. Kidney-Bladder network weakness, usually brought on by extreme fatigue caused by overexertion, lack of sleep, lower backache, and/or excessive sexual activity(interesting, isn’t it?). In modern days, drug usage and dependence on narcotics medications would certainly damage the kidneys.
  2. Negative emotions such as anger, frustration, resentment, and hatred disrupt the liver channel and become a “liver fire” over time. This “liver fire” rises up to the head and damage hearing.
  3. Overconsumption of cold and raw foods and dairy products promotes the formation of mucus, causing congestion and preventing proper nourishment of the ears.

Resolving any hearing problems, Chinese or otherwise, is a daunting task. It may be kidneysear photo

because our ears are directly connected with the kidneys (they look strikingly similar) which are considered to be the deepest organs in our body. 

Once the kidneys are damaged, it’s really difficult to restore the optimal health. Let’s figure out how Qigong exercise can help in resolving tinnitus.

Anxiety versus Depression

Most psychiatrists make a distinction between anxiety and depression, primarily because they need to prescribe different medications to their patients.  Here’s how they are differentiated.

Anxiety Disorders

Anxiety disorders are characterized by a deep sense of doubt, feeling inadequate and vulnerable especially for future events. Fear, excessive worries, unexplained physical sensations, and lack of self protective behaviors are typically displayed. The attention of anxious people is usually focused on their future prospects, and they anticipate outcomes opposite from what they desire to see.

Depression

The key symptoms of depression include:

* Feeling sad, and/or hopeless
* Lack of interest and enjoyment in activities that used to be fun and interesting
* Physical aches and pains without physical cause; lack of energy
* Difficulty concentrating, remembering, and/or making decisions
* Changes in appetite and weight
* Unwelcome changes in usual sleep pattern
* Thoughts of death and suicide

Do they sound markedly different from each other?  In my observation, they are very similar in a sense that anxiety/depression patients’ energy fields are far more susceptible to negative emotions than positive ones. I have not witnessed any anxious person who is not depressed, or vice versa.

For some patients, medications may be absolutely necessary. However, in a majority of cases, once their internal “imbalances” are fixed, anxiety/depression can be lessened relatively easily.