HEARING TIPS

You Have Ringing in Your Ears But You Can Still Sleep

Woman who is having trouble sleeping because she has tinnitus.

Are you being kept awake by ringing in your ears? It’s not necessary. Here are some guidelines for quieting that aggravating, persistent sound so you can get some sleep.

Moderate to severe tinnitus can definitely throw a monkey wrench in your sleeping habits. During the daytime, tinnitus is often less evident because you’re distracted by noise and activity. But tinnitus can seem louder and more stressful at night when it’s quiet.

The good news is, if you would like to fall asleep easier, there are some techniques you can use.

Below are 5 tips to falling asleep in spite of your tinnitus.

1. Quit Resisting The Noise

While this may appear difficult to impossible, paying attention to the noise actually makes it worse. If you begin to become frustrated, your blood pressure goes up and this makes tinnitus symptoms worse. You will feel worse the more you think about it and your irritation will get worse. You can make the sound quieter by thinking about something else and employing the following techniques.

2. Follow a Nighttime Schedule

Condition your body to feel sleepy at the correct time by developing good sleep habits such as dimming the lights, winding down at least a 30 minutes before you go to bed, and going to bed at the same time every night. This will make it easier to fall asleep when you’re ready.

Tinnitus has also been linked to stress. Developing habits to lower your stress level before bed can also be helpful, such as:

  • Doing yoga and stretching
  • Listening to gentle sounds or relaxing music
  • Bathing
  • Concentrating on thoughts that make you relaxed and happy
  • Reading a book in a quiet room
  • At least one hour before bed time, dim the lights
  • Making your bedroom a little cooler
  • Staying away from drinking alcohol
  • Avoiding eating a few hours before you go to bed
  • Doing a short meditation or deep breathing

Getting into a predictable schedule before bed helps you shift from the stresses of the day into night and teaches your body to transition into sleep.

3. Watch What You Eat

There are known triggers to tinnitus like alcohol and artificial sweeteners. Avoid certain foods if you find, after tracking your diet and symptoms, that they trigger or worsen your tinnitus. Caffeine is also a trigger so at least avoid having any in the afternoon and evening.

4. The Common Causes of Tinnitus Should be Avoided

Ringing or other noises in your ears can be caused by many things. Dealing with the cause can help prevent tinnitus or make it better. Here are several things you can do to help:

  • Get treatment for depression or anxiety
  • Use ear protection
  • To find out if one of your medications is triggering tinnitus symptoms consult your doctor
  • Schedule an appointment for your yearly exam
  • Don’t use earbuds…use headphones instead and keep the sound level low
  • If you have inherent conditions such as high blood pressure, get help for it
  • Assess your lifestyle to determine whether you’re subjected to loud noises (and how to limit exposure)

You might be able to better deal with it if you can determine what’s causing the ringing.

5. Make an Appointment to See a Hearing Specialist

A professional hearing exam can help you find possible solutions as well as identify what might be causing your tinnitus. There are several ways hearing professionals can help you control your tinnitus including:

  • Help you deal with thought patterns revealed to make tinnitus worse by recommending cognitive behavior therapy
  • Fitting you for hearing aids designed to cancel out the noise
  • Help you train your brain to not hear tinnitus by signing you up for therapy

To speed up healing and sleep better at night, seek professional help. Schedule an appointment with your hearing care professional to find out if you can get some help with your tinnitus.

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