We know everything about the constant buzzing, clicking and screeching sounds of tinnitus. But did you know that you could also be suffering from eye-tinnitus?
As one tinnitus sufferer said, “suddenly, my ear ringing began to move around the brain”. Then, his ear-ringing became visible: “Pretty much, it’s like your field of view kind of looks like that of a movie screen, like thousands of tiny vibrating dots.” Stories like this are getting more common these days. Find the weird connection between this dangerous brain disorder and tinnitus.
How can tinnitus take over your eyes?
Doctors have named this clinical disorder “Visual Snow Syndrome” (VSS) or “Eye Tinnitus”. Those affected find their vision clouded by a kind of snow or television-like static. Moreover, this is often accompanied by small, moving lights or afterimages like a visual hangover.
Too little is known about this condition and even Googling the phrase returns few results. Basically, researchers say that Visual Snow is to your eyes what tinnitus is to your ears. What is more frightening is that almost 63% of people who suffer from VSS also suffer from tinnitus.
Professor Peter Goadsby, an expert in migraine at King’s College London is extremely worried about the health dangers of this syndrome. “We need to clarify what is happening with people’s brains. We’ve done some brain imaging and have seen some unusual activity in the visual cortex at the back of the brain.”
How to check yourself for visual snow
What few experts know is that for people suffering from Tinnitus, Visual Snow Syndrome can happen suddenly. Here’s a quick way to self-assess yourself for Eye-Tinnitus: Do you experience seeing afterimages?
- Do you often see tiny little dots?
- Are you unusually sensitive to light?
- Are you having extra difficulties seeing during night-time?
- Do you have constant migraines and persisting headaches?
If you suffer from tinnitus and your answer was “yes” to more than 3 questions, then you should consult with your doctor for further analysis. The symptoms you experience could be a sign of something much worse.
Here’s what to do if you suffer from Eye-Tinnitus
Currently, there is no known treatment for this condition. And most of the research in this field is very limited and self-funded by individuals currently suffering from VSS, like the Eye on Vision Foundation.
But you can easily try some of these top solutions, recommended by top researchers and Eye Tinnitus sufferers:
Check your diet: Artificial food preservatives can cause VSS. You can modify your diet to see what foods affect your snow symptoms. Also, a Vitamin B complex is recommended to support the normal activity of your brain.
Music: Playing music helps stimulate the brain and allows all your other senses to rest. This may give you a way to distract yourself from the annoying symptoms.
Get offline: Be careful how much time you spend watching TV or on your smartphone. You can easily set daily screen time limits and experience the benefits in no time.
Moreover, community support can make a difference. The Visual Snow Support Group on Facebook has more than 5,000 members and topics of conversation range from updates on brain doctors’ appointments to exchanging dietary tips.
As always: stay healthy, stay informed!