With chronic tinnitus, it’s not the ringing in your ears that’s the actual issue. It’s the continual never ending ringing, that’s the real issue.
The continuous noise, possibly somewhat modest in volume, may start as little more than an annoyance. But the ringing can become frustrating and even incapacitating if it persists for days or months or more.
That’s why it’s crucial that if you are living with tinnitus you adhere to some tips to make life easier. When you’re lying in bed, having difficulty falling asleep because you keep hearing ringing from your right ear, having a plan is going to help you a lot.
How You Can Worsen Your Tinnitus
Chronic tinnitus, in fact, is often not a static condition. Symptoms present themselves in spikes and valleys. There are times when your tinnitus is minimal and practically lost in the background. In other moments, that ringing could be as difficult to dismiss as a full-blown, individualized symphony.
That can leave you in a very scary place of anxiety. Maybe you even get panic attacks while driving to work because you’re worried about your tinnitus flaring up while you’re in a meeting. That panic attack, in and of itself, can trigger the very episode you’re concerned about.
Tips For Living With Tinnitus
The more you know about tinnitus, the better you can plan for and manage the effects. And, because there’s no known cure for tinnitus, management of symptoms is vital. With the right treatment, there’s no reason that chronic tinnitus needs to negatively affect your quality of life.
Tinnitus Retraining Therapy is One Approach
Tinnitus retraining therapy (TRT) is a standard approach to tinnitus management. The analogy that gets used frequently is the sound of rain on your roof: it’s very loud and obvious when it first starts but by the time the storm is ending you stop focusing on it and fades into the background. It’s the same basic strategy with TRT, training your brain to move that ringing into the background of your thoughts where it’s easier to dismiss.
Mastering this method can take a bit of practice.
Distract Your Brain
One reason tinnitus can be so frustrating is because your brain is constantly searching for the source of that sound, trying to alert you to its presence. So supplying your brain with more (and varied) stimulation to focus on can help. Try these:
- Enjoy a book while soaking in a bubble bath.
- Do some drawing or painting while playing music.
- Enjoy some time outside listening to the sounds of nature.
You get the gist: Your tinnitus might be able to be decreased by engaging your brain.
Meditation, as an alternate approach, helps you concentrate your attention on a mantra, or your breathing which helps take your focus away from your tinnitus. Another benefit of meditation, at least for some, is that it can reduce blood pressure which is a known cause of tinnitus symptoms.
Consider a Hearing Aid For Tinnitus Management
Hearing aids that help decrease tinnitus symptoms are already being developed by a number of hearing aid companies. Hearing aids are a great option because you put them in and can forget about them the entire day, you won’t need to carry around a white noise machine or constantly listen to an app. You can relax and let a discreet hearing aid take care of the ringing for you.
Make a Plan (And Stick to it)
The effect of some tinnitus episodes can be lessened, and your stress reaction can be controlled if you have a practical plan for any spikes in your symptoms. Think about having a “go bag” containing stuff you may need. Anything that will help you be more prepared and keep you from having a panic attack, like making a list of practical exercises, will go a long way toward management.
The Key is Management
There’s no cure for tinnitus which is usually chronic. But control and treatment of tinnitus is a very real potential. Make sure you are managing your tinnitus not suffering from it by using these tips and any others that you find helpful.