There are three types of tinnitus. While all cause sounds with no apparent external source, they are all distinct.
This is the name given to the sounds you hear that don’t have a particular source (such as buzzing, hissing or ringing) that are typically associated with tinnitus. This is the most common type of tinnitus. It only affects the sufferer, and is usually caused by the way the nerves responsible for your hearing communicate with your brain, or by issues in your ear.
With this type of tinnitus, the buzzing, hissing or ringing sounds usually come in time to the rhythm of your heartbeat. Usually brought on when blood flow around your head, neck and ears is constricted, pulsatile tinnitus can be a symptom of an underlying condition or illness, so it’s always best to get it assessed by your doctor or hearing healthcare specialist.
This is much more rare than subjective and pulsatile tinnitus as the buzzing, hissing and ringing sounds are heard not just by the sufferer, but by those who are in close proximity to them. Typically, objective tinnitus is caused by muscle contractions, or the blood vessels in the ear narrowing, which produces sound.
If you have any symptoms of tinnitus, it’s always best to speak to your doctor or a hearing specialist so they can make sure there are no underlying causes that need treatment, and so they can help you manage your symptoms.