Hearing Health Blog

Red wine and too much alcohol is just one of the things you should avoid when you have tinnitus.

There aren’t many conditions that are more difficult to comprehend for those who don’t have tinnitus. That’s because unless you’re afflicted with tinnitus, you won’t feel, see or hear the symptoms in the same way you might other conditions.

But for the nearly 50 million Americans who experience some form of tinnitus, the condition is very real and can be very difficult to deal with. Ringing in the ears is the best classification of tinnitus, but the American Tinnitus Association says, it can present sufferers with whistling, hissing, swooshing, clicking, and buzzing. Maybe the most frustrating part of tinnitus is that these noises aren’t detectable by others, which can lead to disorientation, delayed diagnosis, confusion, and depression.

The number is really astonishing when you take into consideration that 15 percent of the general public has tinnitus. A report put out by the U.S. Center for Disease Control states that 2 million of those individuals experience symptoms that are debilitating and extreme while another 20 million have what’s classified as burdensome and chronic tinnitus.

In order to enhance their hearing and drown out the ringing, people with tinnitus often turn to hearing aids. There are everyday things you can do to minimize the ringing along with wearing hearing aids.

Here are 10 things to steer clear of if you have tinnitus:

  • Alcohol; Your cholesterol and heart health can be positively affected by drinking a small glass of wine each day, or so the old saying goes. But with regards to alcohol and tinnitus, you can have too much of a good thing. Drinking too much alcohol raises your blood pressure, which makes the ringing more evident for many people.
  • Caffeine; Here’s another influencer of blood pressure that can cause a rise in levels. You will probably notice a change in sleeping habits if you drink too much caffeine.
  • Infections; There’s a long-running commentary about the need to cure the common cold, especially because a lingering cold can quickly morph into a sinus infection. Infections in both the ears and sinus have been known to intensify tinnitus, so be certain you’re doing everything you can to limit your exposure to infections.
  • Jaw issues; You should seek advice from a doctor if you have pain in your jaw and even more so if you have tinnitus. Minimizing jaw pain may have some effect on your tinnitus because the jaw and ears share nerves and ligaments.
  • Poor sleeping habits; Mom wasn’t kidding when she said you needed those eight hours each night. Sleep is another essential aspect of healthy living that offers a wide range of benefits, including helping to avoid tinnitus triggers.
  • Certain medicines; Over-the-counter medicines including aspirin and other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs can be quite good at easing pain, but they may actually make your tinnitus symptoms worse. Tinnitus can also be impacted by other medication such as prescription antibiotics or cancer drugs. However, you should always talk with your physician about any issues you’re having before stopping a prescribed medication.
  • Loud noises; This one probably seems obvious, but it’s worth reiterating that loud noises can worsen the sounds you’re already hearing internally. Be careful of situations where you’ll hear sounds at an elevated volume. This includes concerts, loud restaurants, and construction sites. Think about shielding your ears with earplugs if you can’t steer clear of the noise. Earplugs can be particularly helpful for people whose job involves working around loud machinery.
  • Unsafe blood pressure levels; Monitoring your blood pressure is an important preventive tip that will help keep you safe from many conditions, but it also just might keep your tinnitus symptoms at bay. It’s significant to note that both high and low blood pressure levels can worsen tinnitus, so you should be careful about regularly checking your blood pressure.
  • Excess earwax; There’s no doubt that earwax serves a beneficial role in the grand scheme of how your ears work. But actually dirt is trapped and our ears are protected by this sludge that we hate. Even so, tinnitus can get worse if too much wax accumulates. To make certain it doesn’t build up to an unsafe amount, your doctor can clear some of it out and help with prevention.
  • Smoking; Smoking is another habit that can harm your blood pressure. Also, it can make the tinnitus worse by narrowing the blood vessels to the ears.

You can take back your life and manage your tinnitus symptoms even though there is no known cure. Give these 10 recommendations a shot, and you may be surprised with the improvements in your symptoms and your general health. If these don’t help, schedule an appointment with a hearing care professional.

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