Acupuncture for Hearing Loss (Tinnitus)

( last updated : September 18, 2019 )
Acupuncture hearing loss 針灸 中醫 耳聾 Chinese Medicine


Tinnitus refers to feeling of ringing in the head, and deafness refers to dysaudia or hearing disability. Tinnitus may be accompanied by lowering of hearing ability and deafness may develop from tinnitus. Thus, they are discussed together here. Both of them are clinical manifestations that can be seen in many diseases. According to traditional Chinese medicine, tinnitus and deafness respectively belong to Er Ming (ringing in the ear) and Er Long (deafness). They are caused by stagnation of liver qi or overactivity of liver yang transforming into fire to interfere with the clear orifice, over accumulation of internal damp-phlegm which upwardly covers the clear orifice or essence deficiency leading to failure of the brain to be nourished.

Tinnitus is the perception of noise or ringing in the ears. A common problem, tinnitus affects about 15 to 20 percent of people. Tinnitus isn’t a condition itself — it’s a symptom of an underlying condition, such as age-related hearing loss, ear injury or a circulatory system disorder.

Although bothersome, tinnitus usually isn’t a sign of something serious. Although it can worsen with age, for many people, tinnitus can improve with treatment. Treating an identified underlying cause sometimes helps. Other treatments reduce or mask the noise, making tinnitus less noticeable. Symptoms

Tinnitus involves the sensation of hearing sound when no external sound is present. Tinnitus symptoms may include these types of phantom noises in your ears:

The phantom noise may vary in pitch from a low roar to a high squeal, and you may hear it in one or both ears. In some cases, the sound can be so loud it can interfere with your ability to concentrate or hear external sound. Tinnitus may be present all the time, or it may come and go.

There are two kinds of tinnitus.

Aucupuncture for tinnitus

Acupuncture and herbal medicine are effective in relieving tinnitus, and have shown to be effective in treating deafness in some cases. Also, self-pressing ears is a good way to treat obstinate tinnitus. In the manipulation, press bilateral ears towards each other with palms simultaneously for 10 seconds, and release the palms. Then repeat this course for 10-30 times. The treatment is given 2-3 times daily, for 30-60 days. Usually, tinnitus will be milder greatly. After an interval of 1-2 weeks, the next course can begin. The treatment can last until no tinnitus.

1. Hyperactivity of Liver Yang

Manifestations: Sudden onset of tinnitus or even deafness, which is aggravated by bad emotional stimulation, headache, dizziness, flushed face, red eyes, bitter taste, dry throat, irritability, liability to lose temper.

Tongue: Red body with yellow coating.

Pulse: Wiry and rapid.

Treatment Principle: Soothe the liver and restrain the overactivity of yang.

Point Prescription & Manipulation:

Primary points:

Secondary points according to conditions:

Chronic cases: SJ-17 Yifeng and DU-20 Baihui ; Constipation: SJ-6 Zhigou and ST-25 Tianshu ;

2. Upward Covering by Turbid Phlegm

Manifestations: Ringing sound in the head, lowering of hearing ability with sensation of stuffiness in the ear tract, distressed sensation in the chest and epigastrium, loose stools.

Point Prescription & Manipulation:

3. Deficiency of Kidney Qi

Manifestations: Prolonged but mild ringing in the head which may be alleviated by pressure, chronic lowering of hearing ability, dizziness, blurred vision, soreness and weakness of the lower back and knees, nocturnal emission, impotence.

Point Prescription & Manipulation:


September 18, 2019


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