Will.i.am has been judging contestants on their ability to sing well for the past eight years, but the musical maestro suffers from a hearing condition. What is it?
Having fronted pop group The Black Eyed Peas – who sold 31 million albums worldwide – the seven-time Grammy Award winner is famed for his musical prowess.
Speaking to The Sun in 2010, he revealed: “I can’t be quiet, as that’s when I notice the ringing in me ears.
“There’s always a beep there every day, all day… I don’t know exactly how long I’ve had this, but it’s gradually getting worse.”
The 44-year-old is describing a health condition called tinnitus.
The British Tinnitus Association states tinnitus is “the sensation of hearing noises in your ear or head when there is no external cause”.
“Those living with the condition may have to endure a ringing, buzzing, hissing, whistling or other noise,” the charity continued.
The volume of the perceived sound can increase or decrease in volume, and the noise can be constant or intermittent.
Will.i.am is referring to the results of a hearing test shown on an audiogram.
Boots Hearingcare offer a free 15-minute hearing test at around 500 stores across the UK – to find your nearest centre, click here.
There, a hearing expert will check the health of your ears, carry out a hearing test and share your results with you then and there.
The superstar continued: “I don’t know what silence sounds like anymore.”
Occasionally, people may experience tinnitus that sounds like a familiar tune or song.
This is known as musical tinnitus or musical hallucination. Other times, people may experience tinnitus which has a beat in time with their heartbeat. This is called pulsatile tinnitus.
Tinnitus may be more noticeable when somebody is feeling stressed or anxious.
If you experience tinnitus, tell your doctor or the audiologist at a hearing test centre.
The Voice 2020 continues every Saturday on ITV at 8:30pm.