For Car Accident-Related Tinnitus, Compensation Can Include Medical Bills, Wage Loss, Treatment Costs, and Permanent Condition Considerations Such as Pain And Loss Of Enjoyment of Life.
Have you ever had a persistent ringing or buzzing sound in your ears when nothing around you makes any noise? Tinnitus is a perception of sound that is produced internally. The ringing sound is sometimes continual, and other times it is intermittent. Tinnitus is not a medical problem but an indicator of damage to the auditory nerve, traumatic brain injury, age-related deterioration, or exposure to loud noise (acoustic trauma). Severe cases can seriously limit a person’s quality of life.
Auditory Processing to Understand Tinnitus
Sound waves travel from the middle and inner ear to the front of the membranous labyrinth responsible for auditory processing. It is there that tiny hair cells are found. They are the receptors of the auditory system and transform sound waves into electrical signals that pass through the auditory nerve and are sent to the brain’s auditory cortex. If the hair cells are not working, the brain receives incorrect signals, and the abnormal activity in neurons creates tinnitus.
The Four Forms of Tinnitus and Their Characteristics
Subjective tinnitus sufferers have the most common form. Its symptoms can be intermittent, and the affected person can only hear the sounds. Subjective tinnitus can last three to twelve months and, in some cases, be permanent. This type of tinnitus is usually a result of exposure to excessive noise, such as music concerts, sports arenas, construction sites, and factories.
Neurological tinnitus is related to a disorder called Meniere’s disease. It affects the auditory functions of the brain. The signals sent from the inner ear to the brain are misread, and the ear begins to process sounds at a frequency different from usual.
Problems in the sensory system cause somatic tinnitus, also known as somatosensory tinnitus, which is characterized by hearing sounds that occur based on body position or movement. If a sufferer’s jaw is tensed, jarred, or manipulated, or they experience pressure to the muscles of the face, neck, or head, it can cause somatic tinnitus.
Vascular malformations or involuntary muscle spasms can cause objective tinnitus. Once treated, it usually subsides completely. Objective tinnitus is the only form that others can hear, and it is also the form of this condition that has the potential for a complete cure.
Recognizing the Various Symptoms of Tinnitus
The symptoms of tinnitus are ringing, buzzing, whining, pulsating, whistling, humming, chirping, or clicking sounds in the ears that are not coming from external stimuli. Tinnitus can occur sporadically or constantly, depending on the type and severity of the affliction. Some patients experience severe dizziness, nausea, vomiting, or vertigo.
The most trying circumstance for those with tinnitus is the inability of others to hear the sounds they are hearing (except objective tinnitus). Without audible evidence, some people with tinnitus are accused of faking the condition. Tinnitus cannot develop as an independent phenomenon as it is a repercussion of an internal injury or existing disorder.
How Tinnitus Affects Quality and Enjoyment of Daily Activities
Clearly, tinnitus is not a life-threatening injury, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t a life-altering one. Imagine attempting to go to work and participate in your daily activities, such as driving, shopping, and spending time with your friends and family, while listening to an annoying sound that no one else can hear. Twenty percent of tinnitus cases are incurable.
Tinnitus can be terribly disruptive and distracting as sometimes it is so loud concentration, speech, and sleep are impaired. When the condition is temporary, the inconvenience is brief, but permanent tinnitus can cause depression, exhaustion, and an irritable emotional state. Memory problems, headaches, and anxiety are also reported; without a doubt, tinnitus can affect one’s quality and enjoyment of life.
Tinnitus After Car Accident-Related Injuries in NJ
Accidents with injuries to the head, neck, jaw, and cervical spine, many of which occur as a result of a car accident, can also cause tinnitus. A car accident jars the whole body. You may not have visible injuries, such as scrapes or bruises, but if you hit your head, a concussion or brain injury may result.
Car accidents are loud. The violent screeching of tires or the violent impact can cause tinnitus. Even the airbag meant to protect drivers and passengers can push your head back and cause stiffness in your facial, jaw, and neck muscles. The sound of an airbag inflating has been measured at 160 decibels, similar to the sound of an airplane taking off.
Sound-Based Strategies in Tinnitus Recovery
Smartphone sound generator programs that play sounds of waves, waterfalls, rain, or nature sounds such as frogs, birds, and crickets can provide relaxation and facilitate better sleep patterns. If the tinnitus is mild, simply running a fan or a white noise machine may be useful. Wearable sound generators placed in the ear, like hearing aids, make soft sounds that can diminish the effects of tinnitus. Tinnitus retraining therapy can help treat the anxiety and depression many people with this condition succumb to by helping the brain to reclassify the sounds as neutral while also offering low-level sound therapy.
Compensation Options for Tinnitus After a Car Accident
If your tinnitus was caused by a car accident, you can seek compensation—medical bills for doctor visits, hearing tests, audiologist visits, and other medical expenses. You can seek compensation for missed work or future missed work, treatments, and medications. Pain, suffering, and loss of enjoyment of life are also points to consider in a compensation package, especially if your condition is permanent.
Seek Legal Assistance to Pursue Compensation for Tinnitus from a Car Collision in NJ
If you were in a car accident and developed tinnitus as one of your injuries in New Jersey, we can represent you in your attempt to make your life whole again. At Cohen & Riechelson, we have successfully represented hundreds of clients in personal injury cases in Ewing, Princeton, Lawrence, Burlington, Trenton, Willingboro, and East Windsor. We are meticulous and detail-oriented when it comes to building a case. We want you to get the settlement you deserve.
Our attorneys know how difficult it can be to have a condition like tinnitus, especially through no fault of your own. Our personal injury lawyers are seasoned professionals familiar with the insurance company’s tendency to offer less than you deserve. We are outstanding negotiators who always keep the interests of our clients in the forefront of our efforts.
If you have been in an accident and would like to know how our firm can help you recover the damages you deserve for tinnitus, hearing loss, ear and other injuries, call us for a free, no-obligation consultation at (609) 528-2596 or fill at a contact form so that we can reach out to you.