There are few conditions that are more complex to comprehend for people who don’t suffer from tinnitus. That’s because unless you actually have tinnitus, you won’t feel, see or hear the symptoms in the same way you might other ailments.
Tinnitus is a very real and extremely difficult experience for the nearly 50 million Americans who suffer from it. Tinnitus is best described as ringing in the ears, but according to the American Tinnitus Association, it can present sufferers with clicking, whistling, hissing, swooshing, and buzzing. These sounds aren’t noticeable by others and that could be the most frustrating part of tinnitus, which can lead to confusion, disorientation, depression and delayed diagnosis.
While that 50 million number is big, it’s even more astounding when put in the context that it means about 15 percent of the overall public battles with tinnitus. A report released by the U.S. Center for Disease Control states that 2 million of those individuals experience symptoms that are debilitating and severe while another 20 million have what’s classified as burdensome and chronic tinnitus.
There’s a common connection between hearing loss and tinnitus, which is why people often turn to hearing aids to enhance their hearing and to drown out the ringing. While a hearing aid has shown to be a reliable method of lessening the symptoms connected with tinnitus, there are personal actions you can take to minimize the ringing.
If you have tinnitus here are 10 things to avoid:
- Excess earwax; In the grand scheme of how your ears work, it’s a known fact that earwax helpful. In fact, the sludge we all hate actually traps dirt and protects your ears. That being said, too much buildup can cause tinnitus to get worse. Your doctor may be able to help you relieve some of the buildup and give you prevention advice to ensure it doesn’t build up to a dangerous level again.
- Hazardous blood pressure levels; Monitoring your blood pressure is an important preventive tip that will help keep you safe from many ailments, but it also just might keep your tinnitus symptoms under control. It’s significant to note that both high and low blood pressure levels can worsen tinnitus, so you should be persistent about consistently checking your blood pressure.
- Caffeine; Once again, a rise in tinnitus levels comes along with this influence due to a rise in blood pressure. You could also find that too much caffeine changes your sleeping habits.
- Particular medicines; Particular medications such as aspirin, for example, are good at decreasing pain but they might also trigger tinnitus. Tinnitus can also be impacted by other medication like prescription cancer drugs or antibiotics. But before you quit using a medication that was prescribed by your doctor, you should schedule a consultation.
- Smoking; Smoking is another habit that can raise your blood pressure. Also, it can make the tinnitus worse by shrinking the blood vessels to the ears.
- Jaw issues; If you’re having jaw pain, you should already be consulting a doctor, but especially if you also suffer from tinnitus. Reducing jaw pain may have some impact on your tinnitus because the jaw and ears share nerves and ligaments.
- Poor sleeping habits; Mom wasn’t kidding around when she said you needed those eight hours every night. Sleep is another critical aspect of a healthy life that offers a wide range of benefits, including helping to avoid tinnitus triggers.
- Loud sounds; This one probably seems obvious, but it bears repeating that loud noises can worsen the sounds you’re already hearing internally. Be careful of scenarios where you’ll hear sounds at an elevated level. This includes construction sites, concerts, and loud restaurants. If you can’t stay away from loud settings, consider using earplugs to protect you from some of the noise. People who have loud jobs are particularly benefited by ear plugs.
- Alcohol; There’s a well-known adage that states drinking a small glass of wine every day can have a positive effect on heart health and cholesterol levels, and that could be true; however, you definitely can have too much of a good thing when it comes to alcohol and tinnitus. Drinking too much alcohol increases your blood pressure, which makes the ringing louder for many people.
- Infections; Since a lingering cold can quickly turn into a sinus infection there has always been commentary about the need to find a cure for it. Infections in both the ears and sinus have been known to aggravate tinnitus, so make certain you’re doing everything you can to limit your exposure to infections.
You can take back your life and regulate your tinnitus symptoms even though there is no official cure. Give these 10 recommendations a try, and you may be pleasantly surprised with the improvements in your symptoms and your overall health. If these don’t help, schedule an appointment with a hearing specialist.