Tinnitus (ringing in the ears) is regrettably very challenging to diagnose and treat. While scientists are hard at work to discover a cure, a great deal about the causes and characteristics of tinnitus remain little-known.
If you have tinnitus, it’s critical to first seek professional help. First, tinnitus is occasionally a manifestation of an underlying condition that requires medical assistance. In these cases tinnitus can be cured by addressing the underlying problem.
Second, a variety of tinnitus therapies are currently available that have proven to be very effective, including sound masking and behavioral therapies that help the patient to adapt to the sounds of tinnitus. Hearing aids have also been proven to be effective in several cases.
That being said, some cases of tinnitus endure in spite of the best available treatments. Fortunately, there are some things you can do on your own to lessen the severity of symptoms.
Here are 10 things you can do to manage your tinnitus.
1. Uncover what makes your tinnitus worse – every case of tinnitus is unique. That’s why it’s vital to maintain a written log to identify specific triggers, which can be particular kinds of food, drinks, or medications. In fact, there are a number of medications that can make tinnitus worse.
2. Stop smoking – smoking acts as a stimulant and restrains blood flow, both of which can worsen tinnitus symptoms. Studies also show that smokers are 70 percent more likely to acquire some type of hearing loss as compared to non-smokers.
3. Minimize consumption of alcohol or caffeinated drinks – although some studies have challenged the assertion that caffeine makes tinnitus worse, you should observe the effects yourself. The same thing goes for alcoholic beverages; there are no conclusive studies that demonstrate a clear link, but it’s worth monitoring.
4. Use masking sounds – the sounds of tinnitus may become more noticeable and disturbing when it’s quiet. Try playing some music, turning on the radio, or purchasing a white-noise machine.
5. Utilize hearing protection – some cases of tinnitus are short-term and the result of short-term exposure to loud sounds, like at a live concert. To prevent additional injury—and persistent tinnitus—see to it that you wear ear protection at loud events.
6. Try meditation – outcomes will vary, but some people have found meditation and tinnitus acceptance to be effective. Here’s an article by Steven C. Hayes, PhD, the co-founder of Acceptance and Commitment Therapy.
7. Find ways to relax and unwind – alleviating your stress and enhancing your mood can help diminish the intensity of tinnitus. Try yoga, meditation, or any activity that calms your nerves.
8. Get more sleep – lack of sleep is a recognized trigger for making tinnitus worse, which subsequently makes it more difficult to sleep, which makes the symptoms worse, and so on. To guarantee that you get adequate sleep, try using masking sounds at night when dozing off.
9. Get more exercise – researchers at the University of Illinois found that exercise may contribute to lower tinnitus severity. Exercise can also reduce stress, improve your mood, and help you sleep better, all of which can help with tinnitus relief.
10. Enroll in a support group – by joining a support group, you not only get emotional support but also additional tips and coping techniques from others suffering from the same symptoms.
What have you discovered to be the most reliable technique of dealing with tinnitus? Let us know in a comment.