Heartbeat in the ear? What is pulsating ear tinnitus and how to reduce this unpleasant sensation


Reading time: about 4 minutes

Have you ever had the sensation that your head and heart were beating together?

"As if I had my heart inside my ear" is the most recurrent testimony of those who suffer from pulsating ear tinnitus, a disorder that manifests itself with the auditory perception of a rustling or drumming noise that follows the same rhythm as the heartbeat.

The auditory disturbance that characterises pulsating ear tinnitus shows some similarities with other forms of tinnitus, but is distinguished by certain peculiarities. Unlike traditional tinnitus, in fact, which can be described as hisses or sounds with the peculiarity of being constant, pulsating ear tinnitus as its name implies 'pulsates', in the sense that it has a cadence similar to that of a metronome, with a clearly muffled tone.

In addition to the sound characteristic, there is a substantial difference given by the objective existence of the sound input. Traditional tinnitus manifests itself with sounds such as whistling, buzzing, rattling or pulsating in the ears that are not produced by external sources, but generated within the auditory organ. Instead, pulsating tinnitus can be linked to an actual noise resulting from a possible overload of the blood flow. However, we must say that it is a rather rare form of tinnitus that can cause a particularly unpleasant sensation for the sufferer.

Some of the possible causes of pulsating tinnitus

Tinnitus is certainly one of the most common and widespread hearing problems that causes discomfort to many people. Let's take a look at some of the possible causes of pulsating tinnitus.

  • Circulatory dysfunctions: circulatory problems of vascular or venous origin, as well as arterial hypertension or the presence of cholesterol plaques.
  • Acoustic pollution: especially listening to music with earphones. Prolonged exposure to sound exposures assessed as harmful to hearing, which are generally those above 85 decibels.
  • Pharmacological intoxication: the prolonged taking of drugs such as antibiotics and diuretics. Abuse of over-the-counter drugs defined as ototoxic (damaging to hearing).
  • Head and neck trauma.
  • Poor eating habits.
  • High blood pressure: the pulsation of blood in the arteries close to the ear is perceived more than normal and feels like a heartbeat in the ear.
  • Excessive accumulation of earwax can also cause pulsation in the ear: earwax can cause a blockage of the ear canal and can interfere with normal air circulation in the middle ear.

Pulsating ear tinnitus also appears to be influenced by a number of emotional and physical factors, particularly stress. Although it is not always clear whether stress is the direct cause of tinnitus or whether it acts as a contributory factor, it is common for tinnitus to begin or intensify during periods of high stress. It is important to note that stress can aggravate existing tinnitus, leading to an increase in the perception of annoying sounds.

Anxiety can also lead to a decrease in oxygen in the inner ear, generating sounds such as throbbing, buzzing and rustling. The brain, perceiving these sounds as alarm signals, creates a vicious circle with anxiety that may cause problems such as insomnia, irritability and difficulty concentrating if it persists intensively over time.

Tips and remedies for pulsating tinnitus

  • Sound enrichment therapy: it may be beneficial to use specialised hearing devices to reduce or largely eliminate the sensation of pulsating tinnitus. These devices emit different signals that mask the tinnitus and promote relaxation. They can also include customisable options of melodies and sounds, allowing the user to choose the most relaxing ones.
  • Adopt a healthy lifestyle and eat a regular diet: it can be extremely helpful to focus on including fruit, vegetables and seaweed in the diet, as they are rich in beneficial nutrients. It is also important to incorporate foods that provide vitamins A, B and E, as well as zinc and magnesium.
  • Maintain a balanced consumption of coffee, tea and alcohol.
  • Do not listen to music too loudly with earphones.
  • Reduce over-the-counter medications that are harmful to hearing.

Remember that there is a possibility of feeling a pulsation in the ear without this necessarily being related to a pulsating tinnitus in progress; physiological phenomena, such as changes in blood pressure or muscle tension, could contribute to this sensation. Usually this sensation, which is short-lived, disappears after a short time and should not cause worry.

However, it is essential to consult a specialist promptly when pulsating tinnitus is suspected, in order to identify the best treatment strategy. Fortunately, in many cases, recovery from this type of tinnitus occurs within a few weeks with appropriate therapies and only in rare cases may surgery be required to effectively interrupt the pulsations in the ear.

EAR Product Line

Ear Cone Otosan

For ear hygiene, promotes the removal of impurities and excess earwax.

Otosan Ear Cone arose from the rediscovery of a traditional ear hygiene method, called auricular thermotherapy, a gentle technique with ancient origins.

Enhanced with innovative safety and comfort devices, the Otosan Ear Cone is a natural, practical, safe and effective device, which, through beneficial heat and a chimney effect, helps to eliminate impurities and excess earwax from the ear.

Available in packs of 2 cones and 6 cones (convenience size).

Autorizzazione Ministero della Salute del 29.05.12

Read More

6 Cones - 2 Cones

It is a CE medical device.
Read the instructions for use carefully.

EAR Product Line

Ear Drops Otosan

For ear protection and cleansing, promotes removal of impurities and excess earwax.

Respect for nature goes hand in hand with respect for our own body. This is why Otosan carries out ongoing research on new products to improve people’s well-being.

The Otosan Ear Drops, which arose from this constant commitment, are prepared using organic essential oils, propolis and blackcurrant and help to:

  • soothe skin redness and irritation;
  • cleanse the ear canal;
  • remove excess earwax;
  • protect the ear.

Autorizzazione Ministero della Salute del 29.05.12

Read More

It is a CE medical device.
Read the instructions for use carefully.

EAR Product Line

Ear Spray Otosan

For daily ear hygiene, with moisturizing factor. Promotes cleanliness.

Otosan Spray® with organic plant extracts is an innovative product for removing earwax and for daily ear hygiene. It provides a gentle but effective action for cleaner and healthier ears because it eliminates excess wax from the ear canal and, if used regularly, prevents wax formation.

Free from artificial colourings and preservatives, it guarantees high levels of tolerance.

Autorizzazione Ministero della Salute del 29.05.12

Read More

It is a CE medical device.
Read the instructions for use carefully.

ATTENZIONE: Le informazioni riportate in questa pagina provengono da Fonti aziendali e sono pubblicate dopo attente verifiche delle fonti, scelte con cura e per quanto possibile aggiornate ed ufficiali, ma non devono essere considerate informazioni complete e universali, né è possibile garantire l’assenza di errori e la correttezza delle informazioni divulgate.

Testi, immagini, foto e disegni relativi a Dispositivi Medici e Presidi Medico-Chirurgici contenute in questa pagina non hanno carattere né natura di pubblicità e si rivolgono ad un pubblico clinicamente informato. Otosan srl ha la facoltà di apportare eventuali modifiche alle informazioni pubblicate senza darne avviso preventivo. È vietata la riproduzione al pubblico se non per uso strettamente personale e non pubblico.