Hearing loss: Minuscule hair cells in your inner ear (cochlea) may degrade over time, restricting your ability to pick up sound waves. Normally, as the hairs move, they send electrical signals to your brain, which interprets them as sound. Damaged hairs confuse the brain by “leaking” rogue electrical impulses, causing tinnitus.
Ear infection or ear canal blockage: A build-up of fluid or earwax in ear canals can alter pressure in your ear, causing “heartbeat in the ear”. These noises may not be constant and can come and go.
Neck, head and brain injuries. These can affect hearing nerves or the way the brain interprets sound and can cause tinnitus.
Medication: Talk to your doctor to understand which medications you are taking may aggravate tinnitus. A high dose of a particular medicine may cause or worsen noises in the ear, like heartbeat.
Less common causes: Chronic health conditions such as diabetes, other auditory problems, and nerve or brain injuries may also cause tinnitus. Meniere’s disease, ear bone changes, muscle spasms in the inner ear, or neurological disorders are further possible causes.